Born Hiram Williams on September 17th, 1923 in Alabama he was given a guitar by his mother when he was aged seven and was taught to play by local bluesman Rufe Tee-tot Payne. As well as the blues Hank also got an early exposure to both gospel and country music and by his early 20s was playing regularly on the local dance-hall circuit. His tempestuous marriage to Audrey Sheppard in 1944 would later provide him with ample material for songs, with Williams being credited with virtually inventing the can t live with them, can t live without them school of songwriting. He signed his first recording contract in 1949, recording his first major hit the following year and, over the course of the next four years became one of country music s biggest stars. By the time of his death, on New Year s Day 1953, from a combination of pills and alcohol, some felt his career on the slide following his divorce, firing from the Opry and sacking of his backing band. His reputation has risen above this slide and now Hank Williams is rightfully afforded the stature of a country music legend.
Hank Williams - The Hank Williams Story