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Hank Williams

Alone With His Guitar – 2000 (Mercury)

Reviewed by Joel Bernstein

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CDs by Hank Williams

Hank Williams didn't live long enough to make any bad recordings, so the usual question one asks of an album - is it good? - is irrelevant with his "new" releases. The real question is whether there's anything here that someone really needs. This album consists of solo demo and radio broadcast recordings otherwise available only on "The Complete Hank Williams Box Set." As powerful and riveting as Hank can be on these stark recordings, anyone interested enough to feel compelled to hear them needs the box set (and hang the expense.)

Realizing this, the folks at Mercury added some CD-ROM features to this disc. The screensaver is nice if you're into screensavers. The audio bites from Hank and his friends are good for about 90 seconds of amusement. Hank's grandson, Hank III, reads some biographical notes that would have been far more entertaining if he sang them. And you can pull up printed lyrics to accompany each song as you listen to it. Unfortunately, these lyrics sometimes are obviously different from the ones Hank is singing, and some (such as the opening couplet of "I Could Never Be Ashamed Of You") don't even make sense.