Sunday, October 10, 2010

Not New (Clearly), But New To Me

The great Hank Williams, singing 'Nobody's Lonesome For Me'. Hank Williams is totally excellent, and his absence was a serious gap in my collection. He manages to make three-chord slide guitar country music sound manly. And when the lyrics are ostensibly self-pitying and you're including yodeling falsetto in there too, that's a pretty mean feat.

It's also amazing to read about how irresponsible alcoholic country stars acted in the 1950s. Some things never change - multiple children to multiple mothers, and unstable relationships characterised by jealousy and turbulence. But what's different is the tendency to get into (and out of) irresponsible marriages, rather than just groupies and baby-mamas. In Hank's case, they also tended to be hot on the heels of previous failed marriages:

On October 18, 1952, Williams married Billie Jean Jones Eshlimar (born 1933) in Minden, Louisiana.It was a second marriage for both (both having been divorced with children). The next day two public ceremonies were also held at the New Orleans Civic Auditorium where 14,000 seats were sold for each ceremony. It has been written that Williams wanted the two public ceremonies in an attempt to spite Audrey who wanted him back and threatened that he would never see his son again. After Williams' death, a judge ruled the wedding was not legal due to the fact that Billie Jean’s divorce did not become final until eleven days after she married Williams.Hank's first wife, Audrey, and his mother, Lillian, were the driving force behind having the marriage declared invalid and pursued the matter for years. Little mention was made that Williams also married Audrey before her divorce was final. He married her on the tenth day of a required 60 day reconciliation period.
Man, those days are gone and not coming back.

No comments:

Post a Comment