Hank Williams - LONG GONE LONESOME BLUES ( RIVER DRY )

First performance: 20/09/1978


Coverinfo

1978-09-20 - CAPITOL THEATRE, PASSAIC, NJ
 
Bruce soundchecked the song during a fascinating soundcheck, taped from outside the venue before the show. In the middle of a three-night stand at the Capitol, Bruce works through several Hank Williams and other classics .
 
 
 
 

Songinfo

"Long Gone Lonesome Blues" is a 1950 song by Hank Williams. The song was Hank Williams' second number one on the Country & Western chart. The B-side of the song, entitled "My Son Calls Another Man Daddy," peaked at number nine on the Country and Western chart. "Long Gone Lonesome Blues" is quite similar in form and style to Williams' previous #1 hit "Lovesick Blues."  Williams had been carrying the title around in his head for a while but it was not until he went on a fishing trip with songwriter Vic McAlpin that the inspiration to write the song took hold: 
 
"They left early to drive out to the Tennessee River where it broadens into Kentucky Lake, but Hank had been unable to sleep on the trip, and was noodling around with the title all the way. As McAlpin told journalist Roger Williams, he and Hank were already out on the lake when McAlpin became frustrated with Hank's preoccupation. 'You come here to fish or watch the fish swim by?' he said, and suddenly Hank had the key that unlocked the song for him. 'Hey!' he said. 'That's the first line!' As he sometimes did, Williams bought out McAlpin's meager share in the song and took sole credit. 
 
 
 

Bruce on the artist

During keynote speech at the 2012 South by Southwest music conference : 
 
" I remember sitting in my little apartment, playing "Hank Williams Greatest Hits" over and over. And I was trying to crack its code, because at first it just didn't sound good to me. It just sounded cranky and old–fashioned. But it was that hard country voice and I'm playing it, and it was an austere instrumentation. But slowly, slowly, my ears became accustomed to it, it's beautiful simplicity, and it's darkness and depth. And Hank Williams went from archival, to alive for me, before my very eyes."
 
Bruce also referes in some songs to lyrics from Williams 
 
I went down to the river to watch the fish swim by
But when I got to the river so lonesome I wanted to die, oh Lord
So that I jumped in the river, but the doggone river was dry
She's long gone, and now I'm lonesome blue
 
 
 

Lyrics

 went down to the river to watch the fish swim by
But when I got to the river so lonesome I wanted to die, oh Lord
So that I jumped in the river, but the doggone river was dry
She's long gone, and now I'm lonesome blue
I had me a woman she couldn't be true
She made me for my money and she made me blue
A man needs a woman that he can lean on
But my leanin' post is done left and gone
She's long gone, and now I'm lonesome blue
I'm gonna find me a river, one that's cold as ice
And when I find me that river, Lord 'm gonna pay the price, oh lord
I'm goin' down in it three times, but Lord I'm only comin' up twice
She's long gone, and now I'm lonesome blue
She told me on Sunday she was checkin' me out
A long about Monday she was nowhere about
And here it is Tuesday, ain't had no news
I got them gone but not forgotten blues
She's long gone, and now I'm lonesome blue