** ON HOLD FOR PAUL **
Hank Williams Sr. died 10 years before I was born, so my exposure to him was only when I heard one of his songs on the radio. Remember, this was back in the day when Country radio stations actually played real
Country music and not the drivel we hear today. "Bro Country." Nah- I think I'll pass.
Back to Hank. One of my fondest childhood memories was of riding in my father's '65 Chevy II Nova. It was light blue with a blue interior and bench seats. Now my Pops had been a paraplegic since 1958, after a drag racing accident so he drove that Chevy II with a sawn-off broomstick. Drove that car like an absolute boss and never once put a seatbelt on me. I could slide over next to him or get up on my knees to see over the dashboard and it was all good in the hood. He might have told me to sit down if I was moving around too much, but I don't recall many times of that happening.
I also remember the car had a chrome radio with the six or seven buttons you could push to dial in a station. We would be riding to his T.V. repair shop and whenever "Your Cheatin' Heart" came on, my Pops would say "That's Hank Williams, Doodlebug" (like I didn't remember who it was from the last time I heard the song.) Then, Pops would light into that song at full volume leaving me to sit on that bench seat, staring at him like he had three heads. Now in truth, Pops wasn't much of a singer, so looking back, I think I might have been a little scared of all that caterwauling going on in that Nova. But it didn't take very long for me to get into the groove and before I knew it, I was jumping in on "You'll cry and cry," and then again on "When tears come down, like fallin' rain." Pretty soon I had a good bit of the song down, so the duet was cemented and if you were standing on the street back in the mid-late 60's in College Park, Ga. and saw us drive by, the sight would be of a man and his tow-headed son, singing a Hank Williams song at the top of their lungs. Folks, for me, that's a damn fine memory and one I still carry 50 years later.
What I'm trying to relay to you is the power a guitar can have to trigger a memory. The story I just told was what came to my mind when I opened this case for the first time and saw that signature on the fretboard. It gives me a good feeling about this business when you can look at a certain guitar, take it out, strum a few chords and be taken back to a time in your life when everything was simple and okay. Those times were usually in our childhoods, so whenever I get to see a Speed Racer video or notice a Duncan yo-yo in a toy bin in an antique shop, you can imagine where my mind roams. Just making memories, Folks. I'm just making memories here...