Sign up for newsletter
 

Hank Williams receives Pulitzer Prize

Monday, April 12, 2010 – More than half a century after his death, Hank Williams won a Pulitzer Prize.

Williams received the Special Citation honor Monday for his lifetime achievement as a musician when the Pulitzers for 2010 were announced by Columbia University.

The citation praises Williams for "his craftsmanship as a songwriter who expressed universal feelings with poignant simplicity and played a pivotal role in transforming country music into a major musical and cultural force in American life."

The Board, chaired by Anders Gyllenhaal, executive editor of the Miami Herald, made the award after a confidential survey of experts in popular music. "The citation, above all, recognizes the lasting impact of Williams as a creative force that influenced a wide range of other musicians and performers," said Sig Gissler, administrator of the Pulitzer Prizes. "At the same time, the award highlights the Board's desire to broaden its Music Prize and recognize the full range of musical excellence that might not have been considered in the past."

In recent years, the board awarded several other Special Citations in music: jazz composers Thelonious Monk and John Coltrane in 2006 and 2007 and to composer and singer Bob Dylan in 2008.

Williams, who died in 1953 at age 29, was noted for writing and singing songs that reflected the hopes and struggles of everyday Americans, and his compositional skill and fusion of genres, experts say, became the measure by which country music is judged. Among his most famous songs are the standards Your Cheatin' Heart, Cold Cold Heart, I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry and Jambalaya.

More news for Hank Williams

CD reviews for Hank Williams

The Garden Spot Program 1950 CD review - The Garden Spot Program 1950
In a career that spanned a mere six years - a minuscule amount of time compared to those who are today celebrating anniversaries of 40, 50 or even 60 years of more - Hank Williams established himself as an abiding influence on all those who followed, a man whose music is as relevant and revered today as it was when it was originally recorded. Indeed, what Williams accomplished in that scant amount of time still resonates nearly 70 years later. There's been an abundance of compilations, »»»
The Lost Notebooks of Hank Williams CD review - The Lost Notebooks of Hank Williams
"The Lost Notebooks of Hank Williams" is a great story before you even start playing the music. Williams, according to the story, used to write down his lyric ideas in notebooks. When he died, there were four notebooks of unreleased or unperformed songs. Over the years, the notebooks remained in the possession of Williams' publishers Acuff-Rose and few knew of them. One who did, however, was longtime Nashville executive Mary Martin, who shepherded this project to its eventual light-of-day. »»»
Revealed The Unreleased Recordings CD review - Revealed The Unreleased Recordings
After his death in 1953, Hank Williams, became less a performer than a post-mortem brand name wherein his basic personality as an artist was increasingly downplayed and diminished. This remarkably enjoyable three-CD set, drawn from warmly remastered acetates - featuring occasional surface noise - of the old Mother's Best radio show, showcases much of that nearly lost essence. Supported by his regular collaborators the Drifting Cowboys, Williams brings surprising drive to live renditions his »»»
Editorial: Walking the talk – When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: Womack sings "real country music" – Lee Ann Womack made it quite clear where she was coming from three songs in to her first show in the Boston area in years. "We're gonna play country music," said Womack after playing a sparking version of the new song "Don't Listen to the Wind." "I mean real country music." By that, Womack actually meant... »»»
Concert Review: Wait at LakeShake for Paisley proves worth it – The one thing that could be controlled over the three-day Windy City LakeShake country music festival was the weather. With thunder, lighting and rain in the skies on Saturday night, Brad Paisley was forced to cancel that night. But Saturday's loss was Sunday's gain because he ended closing the inaugural fest with a set that was also by... »»»
Subscribe to Country News Digest Country News Digest      Follow Country Standard Time on twitter CST      Visit Country Standard Time on Facebook CST

Elsewhere in the news

Currently at the CST blogs

Milk Carton Kids find themselves on "Monterey" Joey Ryan, half of acoustic folk duo the Milk Carton Kids, is girding his loins for the long trip from the band's Los Angeles home base to Australia. Although he's made this trip before, he's yet to acclimate completely to it.... »»»
Moreland gets high Sitting in a motel room in Houston after a weekend gig at the Mucky Duck, singer/songwriter John Moreland is in a pretty good mood. His career is on a major upswing, and he is riding some pretty big critical success of his latest release, "High on Tulsa." Moreland has a lot to be happy about with three cuts picked for the soundtrack of the hit TV show "Sons of Anarchy," a national record distribution deal with Thirty Tigers and, apparently a well-placed super fan in MSNBC political pundit Rachel Maddow.... »»»
Moorer gets "Down to Believing" Allison Moorer packed a lot of living in the past five years leading up to the recently released "Down To Believing." The results are evident throughout the effort, like a light at the end of a tunnel. Writing or co-writing 12 of the 13 tracks, Moorer is fearlessly open and autobiographical. "Even when I try to make them about something or someone else, they always end up being about me. I am the subject that I know best." ... »»»
Larry Campbell and Teresa Williams CD review - Larry Campbell and Teresa Williams
After serving as a sideman to some of the most distinguished luminaries in the biz - Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, Levon Helm and Mavis Staples among them- it seems well past time that guitarist/producer Larry Campbell would step out on his own and spotlight his skills as both a singer and songwriter. It's to his credit however that he opts to share the spotlight with his wife and collaborator Teresa Williams... »»»
Pageant Material CD review - Pageant Material
Kacey Musgraves is a welcome throwback in these bro and modern country times. That means you're going to hear sharp lyrics with more than a touch of humor, story songs and even instrumentation that recalls traditional country, like pedal steel, mandolin and a Johnny Cash drumbeat. »»»
The Muscle Shoals Recordings CD review - The Muscle Shoals Recordings
The SteelDrivers are a dynamic, driving bluegrass band, a five-piece with a sound and an approach completely their own. "The Muscle Shoals Recordings" is their fourth album and second featuring expressive lead vocalist Gary Nichols and mandolinist Brent Truitt alongside group founders Tammy Rodgers (fiddle), Richard Bailey (five-string banjo), and Mike Fleming (bass). »»»
Call Me Insane CD review - Call Me Insane
Dale Watson continually finds new ways to express old suspicions, judgments and wishes, but always stays comfortably within his self-coined Ameripolitan wheelhouse. Not that there is anything safe or staid about Watson's approach on "Call Me Insane." »»»
The Deslondes CD review - The Deslondes
It's not hard to draw a laser straight line between The Deslondes' New Orleans home base and the quintet's twangy, tangy R&B/Soul gumbo on their eponymous debut. Just press play and marvel at the loping authenticity of the opening track and first single (how very Motown), the Fats Domino-flavored "Fought the Blues and Won."  »»»