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    Sale 1912

    Rock And Pop Memorabilia

    30 November 2007, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 186

    Hank Williams

    Price Realised  


    Hank Williams
    An eighteen page, blue Prizewinner Composition notebook containing thirteen handwritten songs by Hank Williams, and one song in the handwriting of his wife, Audrey Williams. Dating from February and March, 1947, it contains three early versions of recorded songs including I Can't Get You Off My Mind, My Sweet Love Ain't Around (both recorded in November, 1947) and Message To My Mother (recorded as a demo in 1950). The other ten songs were previously unknown before the discovery of this notebook. Songs in the notebook include: The River of Life; Take This Message To My Mother; My Lonely Heart is Breaking; The Love Light In Your Eyes Has Faded; You Told Me You Loved Me; Dear Today I'm Sad and Lonely; Tomorrow is a New Day; I Can't Get You Off My Mind; I Don't Blame Myself; The Love That Didn't Last; Heartaches and Tears; My Sweet Love Ain't Around and Dear God Above Please Here My Prayer. (3)

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    The notebook was originally obtained at one of Audrey Williams' legendary Yard Sales in the 1970s. After many years of legal actions in an attempt to secure the copyright renewals of Hank Williams' work, Audrey held a series of well-publicized sales. It was during one of these events, circa 1972-73, that this particular notebook, along with some other personal affects was obtained. The notebook dates from a crucial period in Williams' career, February through March, 1947. It was during this time that Williams was attempting to springboard from the obscure Sterling Records label to one of the majors. On March 6th, 1947, a new label, MGM Records an offshoot of MGM Movie Studio, signed Williams. This notebook contains songs Williams' would eventually propose to MGM for possible recording. The last song in this notebook is dated March 12, 1947, and the first MGM recording session was held just one month later.

    Very few pieces of Hank Williams' handwriting exists today. Two similar notebooks are in the collection of Acuff-Rose/Sony (Williams' Music Producer), and the scant remaining handwritten letters and documents are in the possession of family and friends. The notebook, in common with the other known notebooks, is folded down the middle, probably allowing Williams to carry it around in his pocket and jot down songs when the mood took him. Accompanied by a letter from the original owner, a CD with recordings of the three known songs, and a letter from Colin Escott, author of Hank Williams, Snapshots from The Lost Highway, along with a copy of the book.

    Saleroom Notice

    Please be advised that the copyright in Mr. Williams' lyrics is owned by Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, and that the buyer is purchasing the object only, and not any reproduction or other intellectual property rights.