Alan Jackson Honors Legendary Hank Williams With Awe-Inspiring “Lovesick Blues”

Years after his death, Hank Williams is still, and will always be, considered a huge country legend.

In 1994, Alan Jackson stepped on stage at the Roots of Country TV Special, performed Hank Williams’ 1948 hit “Lovesick Blues,” and rocked it.

Atlanta – FEBRUARY 19: Singer/Songwriter Alan Jackson performs at The OMNI Coliseum in Atlanta Georgia February 19, 1991 (Photo By Rick Diamond/Getty Images)

While he introduced the song, Jackson announced that two members of Hank Williams’ original band, The Drifting Cowboys, would be performing with him. Steel guitar player Don Helms and fiddler Jerry Rivers played with Jackson, who said it was “an honor.”

Jackson sang “Lovesick Blues” with a perfect yodel and a Hank Williams feel. It’s almost as if you could feel Williams’ presence while watching this performance.

UNSPECIFIED – circa 1948: (AUSTRALIA OUT) Photo of Country singer Hank Williams (1923-1953) posed circa 1948. (Photo by GAB Archive/Redferns)

Did Hank Williams write “Lovesick Blues”?

“Lovesick Blues” dates back to 1922, when it was included in the musical Oh, Ernest and was recorded by Elsie Clark and Jack Shea. It was composed by Cliff Friend and the lyrics were written by Irving Mills.

In 1925, Emmett Miller recorded it for the first time – and again in 1928. Rex Griffin then put his spin on it in 1939. Griffin and Miller’s versions inspired the legendary Hank Williams so much that he performed a cover of it in 1948 on his very first appearance on the Louisiana Hayride radio show.

The audience loved it, but when Williams showed interest in recording it, his band didn’t think it was a good idea, and neither did his producer, songwriting legend Fred Rose.

Despite their feelings, Williams went ahead and recorded it, and it became an overnight success when his record label, MGM Records, released it in February 1949.

Although there will be no one quite like Hank Williams himself, Jackson’s tribute to the late country star is an incredible reminder that legacies do live on. Watch Jackson’s awesome tribute performance below.

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