Hank Williams Quote

Blue Stew mail@bluestew.com
Fri Oct 24 03:47:24 EDT 2003


There was a movie about 16 maybe 20 yrs ago that portrayed Hank playing
the New yrs gig that he never made it to.  The cat that played Hank was
a guy named "Sneezy Waters", or something like that.  It even had an old
black guy portraying Rufus. It was shown on the CMT station.  I think it
was called "The Show Hank Never Did".  Dz anyone remember this movie?
I'd love to see it again.  Oh yeah, the playing and singing were all
done live, no lip syncs.  Very cool stuff!
mike

-----Original Message-----
From: Blues Music List [mailto:BLUES-L@LISTS.NETSPACE.ORG] On Behalf Of
Greg Freerksen
Sent: Thursday, October 23, 2003 4:10 PM
To: BLUES-L@LISTS.NETSPACE.ORG
Subject: Re: Hank Williams Quote

Three years ago 6 made the following post.  It was as true then as it is
now.

The largest influence on the music of Hank Williams Sr. was Rufus Payne
an
African American street  musician also known as Tee Tot.  This is a
simple
fact as stated by Hank repeatedly during his life time.

In the biography of Hank Williams written by Colin Escott - the author
writes at page 11:

"Lillie (Hank's mom) says she fed Payne in exchange for Hank's lessons,
but
almost everyone's memories of him are vague. Most say that he had a
humpback
and long simian arms that stretched almost to his knees; no one
remembers
any of the songs he used to play.  Irene (Hank's sister) told the story
that
Payne once came to Lillie's house and told her that Hank was going to
get
both of them into trouble by following him around, which seems to imply
that
Hank was fairly insistent in pursuing Payne.

"As unfashionable as it was at the time to acknowledge the influence of
black musicians, Hank later went out of his way to give Payne full
credit.
'All the music training I ever had was from him,' he told the Montgomery
Advertiser in 1951. Talking to Ralph J. Gleason in June the following
year
he said, "I learned to play the guit-tar from an old colored man ... He
...
played in a colored street band ... I was shinin' shoes, sellin'
newspapers
and followin' this old Nigrah around to get him to teach me to play the
guitar. I'd give him fifteen cents, or whatever I could get a hold of
for
the lesson." A few months later, Hank acknowledged Payne again in
Greenville
and searched for him there, but Payne had probably died by then. Records
indicated he died in a charity hospital in Montgomery on March 17,
1939."

In  my opinion, Hank Williams Sr. debt to blues man Tee Tot was largely
ignored at the time because of the pervasive racism of the period. We as
blues fans today, need to do what we can to correct the historical
record
with the documented facts which were conveniently ignored during Hank's
lifetime.

Greg Freerksen, host "Blues Edition" Public Radio from College of DuPage
-
90.9 FM WDCB, Glen Ellyn, Illinois 7-9 pm Saturdays

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