Hank III…Risin’ Outlaw

Hank III

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Hank III was born Shelton Hank Williams on December 12, 1972.  He plays the guitar, bass, drums, banjo and keyboard.  He also sings and can actually yodel.  His style alternates between country, punk and metal.  He has a solo career, a band named Assjack, drummer for Arson Anthem and was bassist for Pantera singer Phil Anselmo‘s band, Superjoint Ritual.

For the most part, Hank III keeps his personal life personal and he doesn’t get involved in politics.  His appearance bears an uncanny resemblance to his grandfather, Hank Williams Sr.  He is tall, lanky, has a  thin face and the exact facial characteristics as his granddaddy.

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Hank III had to grow up with an absent father, Hank Williams Jr.  Hank Jr. took to drinkin’, drugs, and womanizing.  This left III dealing with parental divorce, moving a lot, dyslexia, attention deficit disorder, and drug and alcohol abuse.  Living with his name hasn’t been easy either.  Battling alcohol, drugs and his name is a constant in his life.  Onstage, when he is brought a shot of whiskey, he takes it.  He says, “I’ll always pick it up and shoot it right down.  That will always get the biggest crowd response of the night.  Then I’ll hold up the empty glass and say, ‘Thank you for applauding my addiction!'”  Lots of people challenge his name and all he says is, “It’s right there on my birth certificate, I’m not a fake.”

Growing up, he found comfort in music.  He began listening to KISS and Ted Nugent but later developed a taste for bands like the Dead Kennedys and the Misfits.  As a teenager he was a drummer in the grunge bands Buzzkill, Bedwetter and Rift.  He hardly ever talked about his family.  “I cared about drumming and playing punk music.  I hated country music with a passion.  I hated any kind of music that was commercial.  That was the enemy.”

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Hank III has always been seen in thrift-shop clothes consisting of t-shirts and blue jeans.  He’s never cared too much for outward appearances or money.  Instead, he chooses to let his music speak for him.  He’s NEVER seen a dime of the family fortune either.  “I ain’t never seen no money from anyone, but I ain’t asked for it either.”, he said.  His mom, Gwen Williams, was Hank Jr.’s second wife.  They split up when III was very young.  By age 11, he and his mom moved to Atlanta, Georgia.  After the move, he barely saw his father.  In an interview in 2000 he said, “I never saw him much.  I can see why.  He was drinkin’ and druggin’ and being with women-being Bocephus.  I got to go out on the road with him a couple of times, but after a while you could tell he didn’t want me around, that I was gettin’ in his way.”  Soon after Atlanta, they moved to North Carolina and by age 15 he was back in Nashville.  He graduated high school at age 19 and moved in with a family friend after his mom moved to California.

At age 20 he was sued by a girl who claimed he got her pregnant when he was 17.  He took a blood test and got a $24,000 judgement in court.  He wasn’t making much money, $25 per show, but he did the right thing by his child.  He knew he had to make more money though.  He teamed up with Jack McFadden to set off a career.  He paid the money the court ordered him to.  This was the moment, after changing his hair, clothes and playing country music, that he changed his opinion about country music.  Risin’ Outlaw, his debut album, sounds eerily identical to his grandfather.  Reviews were good and both rock and country music lovers liked it.

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In 1999 his family and friends, including Hank Jr. and Waylon Jennings, came together for an intervention.  They persuaded him to enter a drug and alcohol rehab program.  Rehab wasn’t very successful.  He has said, “I finally just told Waylon and my dad, ‘Look, you have to give me time to max out.  I’m just doing the same thing you fuckers did.  I’m going to keep a limit on it a little bit.'”

Playing both rock and country truly makes him happy.  He is glad to do both and says, “The good thing is the rock crowds like hearing me play rock and country.  But the country crowds only want to hear country and that’s all.  I can’t help it that the rock crowds are more open-minded–and the girls are prettier.”  I found that funny as hell!

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If you haven’t heard his music or much of it…you should!

Albums

Three Hanks: Men With Broken Hearts- the 3 generations of Williams men singing alongside one another

Risin’ Outlaw

Thrown out of the Bar and Straight to Hell- Curb Records wouldn’t release Thrown out of the Bar and ended up in court.  A judge ruled in III’s favor.  They came to terms and it was reworked into Straight to Hell.

Damn Right Rebel Proud

Lovesick Broke & Driftin’

Assjack- a punk-metal album

Rebel Within- charted at #20 in Billboard Magazine

Curb Records released This Ain’t Country under the title Hillbilly Joker without the consent or imput from Hank III after his contract was terminated.  III told his fans, “Don’t buy it, but get it some other way and burn the hell out of it and give it to everyone.”

Ghost to a Ghost/Gutter Town- a 2 disc country record

3 Bar Ranch Cattle Callin’

Attention Deficit Domination

Curb also released Long Gone Daddy after he was gone.

Brothers of the 4×4

A Fiendish Threat

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I recently had the chance to go see Hank III.  And let me tell ya, he sticks to what he says!  He does his own thing and rocks out.  He seems like such a down-to-Earth kinda guy who doesn’t take shit from anyone.  He doesn’t follow trends or bow down to the music industry.  Personally, I think this is the way we should all be…making our own path and holding our heads high.
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Government Shutdown

Government shutdown…the damn government has shutdown.  What in the hell is wrong with these people?  It’s like a bunch of kids fighting over the same damn crayon!  And, from my understanding, the president refuses to work with them.  No talking, no negotiating, no working things out together…really?!?

There are a few things that have come to a halt since the shutdown that don’t make much sense to me…well, none of the shit closed down and stopped makes sense to me.  But there are a few that have rubbed me the wrong way.

Call centers, hotlines and regional offices that aid our Veterans in understanding and dealing with their benefits have closed.  Our Veterans fought and sacrificed for this country and some of those sacrifices would make the average citizen shit their pants.  Their compensation, pension and education has been brought to a halt as well, from what I hear.  Is this how our government should treat the ones who gave their all for this country???

National parks, memorials and museums have closed.  This is just another form of a man “pitchin’ a fit” and throwin’ a damn tantrum.  These closings do nothing to help the debt issues in this country, in my opinion.

Small business loans have been stopped.  Small businesses and business owners are already suffering due to this economy and the Obamacare crap and now they can’t do what they need to stay afloat???  Small business owners are being punished for no reason.  Say what you want, but these people help shape us and remain a solid backbone for our country.

Research for life-threatening diseases has stopped too.  Seriously???  Due to a group of people who can’t sit and talk things out like adults and one man who refuses to help, we have to put research like this on hold?  There are several researchers studying things like sexual arousal in anesthetized female rats (at Dartmouth college) and developing a video game that simulates a high school prom (half-million dollar grant for this one!)  Are you kidding me?  Where are the priorities???

Certain kinds of work have come to a halt that protect all of us…things like child public safety and the safety of hazardous waste facilities.  EPA hasn’t been doing any “non-essential” inspections of chemical places or drinking water systems.  Why does this country jump to help and give financial aid to other countries, yet refuses to take care of its own citizens?

Federal employees have been put on furlough that help fight terrorism, defend our borders, inspect our food and watch our skies.  What the hell?  I am so damn disappointed!  It is sad to have leaders and lawmakers acting like little spoiled brats!

The death benefits for military families have been cut off.  This includes the monetary benefits and basic housing allowance.  Four soldiers killed in Afghanistan last week are the first this happened to.  Let me repeat that one more time…FOUR SOLDIERS KILLED IN AFGHANISTAN LAST WEEK…defending this country, paying the ULTIMATE PRICE, leaving behind grieving families….And get this shit, their families can meet the plane at Dover Air Force Base but must pay their own way to get there!  Seriously?!?  Their names are…Sgt. Patrick C. Hawkins, 25; Pfc. Cody J. Patterson, 24; Sgt. Joseph M. Peters, 24; and First Lt. Jennifer M. Moreno, 25.  Read the article for yourself, if you want.  http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/09/us/politics/shutdown-holds-up-death-benefits-for-military-families.html?_r=1&

WIC has stopped issuing benefits.  That is almost 9 million moms, infants and toddlers suffering.  Formula and healthy food should be a major priority for new moms and their babies.  Yes, I am well aware that some people abuse this program and many other programs out there…but can we please think for one minute about the people this programs helps?  These are babies!  How many people have to suffer due to our “government” squabbling and not working together?

And it may not matter to most, but commissaries were closed as well.  I don’t know why people think the military make mega bucks, but let me tell ya something…they don’t.  Lots of families depend on the commissary for their family’s groceries.  Some families have only one car or have to car pool.  So, the commissaries shutting down did hurt a lot of families.  I would like to thank Sam’s Club for waiving membership fees for the military through this ridiculous shutdown.  Sam’s Club has really stepped up and extended a helping hand.

Well, there you have it.  I apologize for this being a little long, but I really think these could have been avoided.  We are hurting, as a nation.  We are turning a blind eye to what’s going on around us.  We are bowing down and accepting shitty treatment for no reason.  We can do better than this.

Letting go…

I talk to people.  I talk to people a lot!  I get to know them.  I love hearing life stories…the happy stuff, sad times, troubles, proud moments, joyful memories, etc.  I must admit though, I always hear stories about that one person that was just never happy with anything.  You know the one…he/she gets mad at nothing, blames everyone but themselves when shit goes wrong, never says positive things, etc.  We all know one!

They could be an aunt, uncle, mom, dad, sibling, so-called friend.  And I may not be the smartest or give the best advice, but here goes.  LET GO!  Stop trying to please someone who doesn’t care.  Stop being overly nice to someone who is constantly ugly to you.  Don’t beat yourself up when they say or act like everything is your fault.  Please understand that I’m not saying you should be mean and hateful.  Just stop wasting energy and getting stressed for something that isn’t your issue to fix.  It takes two people to make a relationship work.  Friends and family relationships take work, but you gotta work together.  If that person is not willing to do his/her part, let go.

I have personally dealt with a person like this.  I tried and tried and tried until I thought I would go crazy.  I talked, apologized, was so nice, gave space, took the silent treatment, dealt with the hateful words….and for what?  Life is a little too short to wade waist deep in crap.  Some people just need some time to come around.  They need to take a good look and realize you’re important too.  And you need to realize your life can’t revolve around just one person who doesn’t give 100%.  I know some of this comes off as me being cold and mean, but I promise I’m not.

Anyway, I hope this little bit helps and feel free to comment and vent!  Venting does a lot of good!  And feel free to disagree as well!  Haha…I know this has probably made a few people think I’m horrible.