Hank Williams: Timeless (Lost Highway)

Few comets ever burned as brightly or as briefly as that of the legendary Hank Williams, whose meteoric impact continues to reverberate throughout music today. Although known as a country artist, Hank's short recording career - lasting only from 1946 until his death in 1953 - influenced performers across a wide musical spectrum.

That fact is illustrated by the kaleidoscope of stars gathered to honor him on Timeless. Bob Dylan's version of "I Can't Get You Off Of My Mind" is lighthearted and surprisingly articulate, while Rolling Stone Keith Richards' "You Win Again" is earnest and tender. Sheryl Crow cops an authentic country feel on her laid-back, yodel-riddled rendition of "Long Gone Lonesome Blues" and Emmylou Harris' take on "Alone And Forsaken" is haunting and melancholy. The album's eeriest moment is "I'm A Long Gone Daddy," on which Hank III is the spitting sonic image of his pioneering grandfather. The variety of interpretations only proves that as a songwriter, Hank Williams knew no boundaries. It was Hank's gift as an interpreter of the human heart that makes his songs - no matter who sings them - so Timeless.

- Nick Krewen

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