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Honkin it with Hank Thompson and Wake Up Irene
We’re honkin’ it today with Mr. Hank Thompson and a song that Gary Hightower liked to play on XM-13, Willies Place. In fact we will probably feature more honky tonk music to fill in for a while.
“Wake Up Irene” features a little bit of wildwood flower lead guitar and a takeoff on “Goodnight Irene” which, as Hank Thompson says, was performed by everyone for months and months around the country. Even Crosby too, said Hank. The world of country music lost a great man when we lost Hank Thompson in 2007. To examine his attitude and the respect he had for today’s musicians we feature a nine-minute segment on YouTube. You can the mutual respect, and why Hank Thompson was such a leader in country music.
We present the following with great pleasure and all due respect:
To start honkin with Hank Thompson, and to listen to “Wake Up Irene” we found two choices for you. We bought Hank’s CD “Hank Thompson 20 Greatest Hits” which contains “Wake Up Irene” and you can play samples from each track at CD Universe. The entire CD is great, and when we played it for customers in our store they remembered every song with the exception of “Cab Driver.”
While we did finally find a copy of “Wake Up Irene” on YouTube you might need to adjust you graphic equalizer for this recording. I think it came from a live show, but cannot be sure about that.
Hank was a great guy, a clear-eyed sharp entertainer, and he never tired from doing what he loved to do. Hank was a big guy, big hearted, and an innovator. His backing band, The Brazos Valley Boys, was voted the number one Country Western Band for 14 years in a row by Billboard Magazine. Hank Thompson was elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1989 and was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1997.
A performer until the end, Hank performed his last concert in October 1997 in Waco Texas, the city in which he was born, and died a month later from lung cancer.
The official Hank Thompson website is www.hankthompson.com
An obituary can be seen here, and it is well worth reading. We extend our heartfelt thanks to the UK newspaper “Times Online” for a great piece.