College for a Day
April 24, 2012
Tunes for Twangers III
The Man in White ~ The Man in Black

Hiram King "Hank" Williams

... for attending the Spring 2012 edition of College for a Day. In our session today, we shall explore the extraordinary contributions of two extraordinary gents - Hank William Sr. and Johnny Cash. Special Thank-You to those of you Elder Twangers who have attended either or both of the first two in this series of chats.

J. R. John Ray "Johnny" Cash
... to get in the mood ...

I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry

Daddy Sang Bass

Blue Yodel #1
[Jimmie Rogers Influenced Both Hank & Mr. Cash]

Singer-Song Writers
Country Music Legends
American Music Legends
Lasting Legacies
*much can be said - little needs to be said*

"Hank Williams set the agenda for contemporary songcraft, but his appeal rests as much in the myth that even now surrounds his short life. He is the standard by which success is measured in country music on every level, even self-destruction" ... Colin Ascott

Hank Basics
Born: Mt. Olive, Alabama
Parents: Lon & Lillie
Lon - lumberjack, WWI Vet, hospitalization
Lillie - strong-willed, controlling, "boarding house"
Hank - small, fragile, introverted, spina bifida
influence of the cousins
influence of Jimmie Rogers
all-important influence of Rufus Payne [TeeTot]
Country Blues
Lillie's contributions to his career
Enter Audrey - Audrey Mae Shepard - previously married - one daughter
conflict between Lillie and Audrey
early radio, early appearances, early problems
To Nashville - Fred Rose
Grand Ol Opry - Louisiana Hayride
Luke the Drifter
challenges increase
tragic early death - backseat of his Cadillac - New Year's Day 1953
Legacy - CM HOF, R&R HOF, et al

Signature Tunes
(to name but a few)

Move It on Over
I'm a Long Gone Daddy
Lovesick Blues

Your Cheating Heart

Jambalaya on the Bayou

Hey Good Lookin'

I Saw the Light

Signature Tunes
(to name but a few)

Hey Porter

Cry, Cry, Cry

Folsom Prison Blues

I Walk the Line

Ring of Fire


Johnny Cash

"Quite possibly, the most recognizable voice in all of country music belongs to The Man in Black, Johnny Cash. His forays into the fields of country, folk, rock and even gospel music, distinguish Cash as one of the most intriguing performers in all of 20th century popular music. In addition to one of the most-impressive music careers of all-time, he enjoyed success and garnered tremendous respect as an author, an actor and a biblical scholar" ... Charles Wolfe

"every man knows he is a sissy compared to Johnny Cash" ... Bono

Johnny Cash Basics
Born: Kingsland, Arkansas
Parents: Ray and Carrie
Siblings: Five
Ray - sharecropper, alcoholic
Carrie - church-going, hymn singer
moved to the Dyess Government Agricultural Colony when JR was 3
Brother Jack - tragic death
as a young boy listened to WSM - Carter Family
conflicts with his father
enlisted in the Air Force - 4 years - Germany - Vivian
wrote early classics - Folsom Prison, Hey Porter
1954 - married Vivian, moved to Memphis, appliance salesman, started band
Tennessee Two - Luther Perkins [Guitar], Marshall Grant [Bass]
Sun Records - Sam Phillips
Early Success with Hey Porter, Cry, Cry, Cry & Folsom Prison Blues
Touring with the Sun Caravan [Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis & June]
1956 - first appearance on the Grand Ol Opry
Mother Maybelle
move to California
change record labels to Columbia
problems with marriage
substance abuse challenges
dark days
returns to Nashville
"The Cave Experience"
June and Mother Maybelle
1968 - marries June
career sky-rockets
Folsom Prison Live Album, Sunday Morning Coming Down [K. Kristofferson]
television program
world tours
Highway Men [JR, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings & Kris Kristofferson]
relationship with Billy Graham
break with Columbia - nasty
American Recordings - Rick Rubin [1994]
American I, II, III & IV & V Albums [V released after his death]
Legacy: CM HOF, R&R HOF, Kennedy Center Honors, et al

True Icons of American Music
for being a part of our MIW-MIB Session
Tunes for Twangers III
College for a Day
April 24, 2012