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40 Greatest Hits
     

40 Greatest Hits

2.7 4
by Hank Williams
 
In a life that was too short and too tortured, in a recording career of equal brevity (1946-1952), Hank Williams merely transformed the quotidian experiences and feelings of everyday folk into poetry. His inventive and direct use of language remade the country song into a vehicle for limning the darker goings-on beneath the cheery facade of postwar American society,

Overview

In a life that was too short and too tortured, in a recording career of equal brevity (1946-1952), Hank Williams merely transformed the quotidian experiences and feelings of everyday folk into poetry. His inventive and direct use of language remade the country song into a vehicle for limning the darker goings-on beneath the cheery facade of postwar American society, and propelled the music out of the rural South into mainstream America, with the considerable help of pop artists such as Tony Bennett and Rosemary Clooney, whose cover versions of Williams's songs were massive pop hits in the early '50s. Williams's hits are available in a number of configurations, some of which were doctored after his death. 40 GREATEST HITS stands as a concise, two-disc overview of the basic texts, ranging from autobiographical tearjerkers ("I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry," "Your Cheatin' Heart") to uptempo barn burners ("Jambalaya," "Hey Good Lookin' ") that prefigured the rise of rockabilly a year after his death, to the deeply-felt gospel confessions torn from bitter experience ("I Saw the Light"), as well as the eerie "I'll Never Get Out of This World Alive," the single that was climbing the charts when heart failure claimed Williams on January 1, 1953. For the definitive Hank Williams collection, look to the ten-CD box set, COMPLETE RECORDINGS; among lower-priced titles that best represent the breadth and depth of a great artist's legacy, 40 GREATEST HITS is a guaranteed winner.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Mark Deming
Hank Williams' body of work is so large and has been repackaged so many times in so many forms that the notion of creating a definitive compilation almost seems like an impossible goal. However, as a one-stop shopping place for Hank's basic repertoire, 40 Greatest Hits is as good as it gets. While it doesn't include everything, practically every memorable hit is here, and thankfully every cut appears in its original form (that means in mono, with no string overdubs or artificial duets with his family members). The track sequence subtly reflects the arc of Williams' short but vitally important career, and there's enough good music and great songs here to make a fan of anyone with even a passing interest in American music. If you care about country music, you need some Hank Williams in your collection, and there isn't a better introduction to his rich body of work on the market than 40 Greatest Hits; begin here, then start exploring.

Product Details

Release Date:
10/25/1990
Label:
Polygram Uk
UPC:
0042282123329
catalogNumber:
821233
Rank:
688

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40 Greatest Hits 2.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
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