During the late 1940’s and 1950’s some of the Opry’s best known performers were Ernest Tubb, Eddie Arnold, Cowboy Copas, Red Foley, Little Jimmy Dickens and Hank Williams. Famous comedy acts at the time were Minnie Pearl, Grandpa Jones and David “Stringbean” Akerman.
One of the most legendary stories in history of country music, is when Hank Williams made his first Opry appearance on June 11, 1949. He sang his song “Lovesick Blues”. he was the only Performer, at the time, to be called out for six encores.
Hank Williams is known as the King of Country Music and has written over 50 hits, not counting the ones that he co-wrote. Most of his songs were from his heart and explained the life he lead. Hank had a back injury and would drink and take pain killers to ease the pain. In August 1952 is the date when Hank Williams was fired from the Opry. He was fired because of his many no show appearances and his alcohol abuse along with his wild behavior. Williams was a great singer and song writer. His total number of songs that he sang was 167. He not only wrote and sang country, he also wrote and sang gospel such as “I saw the Light,” “I Heard my Mother Praying for me”, “The old Country Church” and many more. Williams has influenced many of our country artist and his legend lives on today.
One of the saddest days in country music was in 1953 when Hank Williams was on his way to a concert in Canton, Ohio on New Years Day and died at the young age of 29, in the back seat of his Cadillac from a heart attack. Williams accomplished so many hit songs during his short life and they are still played today. Hank Williams is still considered the King of Country Music.