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20 of Hank Williams' Greatest Hits

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iTunes Review

The producers of this landmark Hank Williams collection made the misleading choice of using a bronze bust of the singer for the cover image; the statue makes Williams seem like a museum relic, but when this compilation was released in 1970, his music was more relevant than ever. Merle Haggard was at the top of the charts thanks to a wining formula that owed a lot to Williams’ no-nonsense mode of songwriting, while Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson were about the change the face of country by re-injecting it with the outlaw spirit of these 20 songs. Moreover, country music was beginning to infiltrate the rock scene, as The Byrds, The Rolling Stones, and the Flying Burrito Brothers began to look toward Williams for inspiration. It’s not hard to see why these 20 Williams tracks have had such an enduring influence; taken together, they form a manual for songwriters. Williams was unmatched in his ability to speak directly to the listener, and his songs feel immovably basic and ineffable as the same time. Without “Lost Highway” or “I’ll Never Get Out of This World Alive,” this collection isn’t all the Williams you need, but it stands as a concise summation of his distinctive power as a singer, a songwriter, and a bandleader.

Customer Reviews

The timeless brilliance of Hank Williams Sr.

While I fully regard Hank as the most important country music artist ever-- even more so than Johnny Cash who had more of a rockabiilly flavor than pure country, I only give this album 4 stars for its lack of some very important Williams classics like "Long gone lonesome blues", "Oh please dont let me love you" "I heard that lonesome whistle blow" "Alone and forsaken" amongst others. There is a very good 2 cd album called Hank Williams gold that I recommend over this one-- and I DO recommend you listen to it over and over to truly be left in awe at the pure torment and raw emotion embodied in his music and lyrics. I get goosebumps everytime.


This is the true definition of classic! This is the best Hank Williams Sr. album.

This cd completely changed my perception of country music

First heard 'I'm so lonesome I could cry' during a very hard time in my life, introduced me to Hank Williams and folk/country in general. I don't like modern country music, but Hank Williams is in a class of his own. No covers ever touch his originals. Amazing voice, perfect, simple music.


Born: September 17, 1923 in Georgiana, AL

Genre: Country

Years Active: '30s, '40s, '50s

Hank Williams is the father of contemporary country music. He was a superstar by the age of 25; he was dead at the age of 29. In those four short years, he established the rules for all the country performers who followed him and, in the process, much of popular music. Hank wrote a body of songs that became popular classics, and his direct, emotional lyrics and vocals became the standard for most popular performers. He lived a life as troubled and reckless as that depicted in his songs. Hiram King...
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