Not all birthdays and anniversaries in country music are built the same. The centennial of the birth of Hank Williams on September 17th, 2023 has been 100 years in the making, and will be celebrated by country music fans across the United States and beyond, in gatherings and events both big and small. As arguably the most important figure in country music history, celebrating the birth of Hank is about as close as you can get to celebrating the birth of country music.
If you want to appreciate the lasting impact of this man who was born 100 years ago, and died at the age of 29 in 1953, consider there will be individuals commemorating him on at least three separate continents, and in five different countries. To go along with events across the United States, there will be two gatherings in the UK, two in Australia, another in Ireland, one in The Netherlands, and these are just the ones being publicized online.
One of the biggest events will happen over three days in Hank’s hometown of Montgomery, Alabama. The Hank Williams Museum will have multiple performances at the Davis Theater, as well as a wreath laying at the grave of Hank Williams at 8:30 AM on September 17th. Performers include Rhonda Vincent and Gene Watson.
Another major event will be held at the Country Music Hall of Fame on Thursday, September 21st as part of AmericanaFest that week in Nashville. Holly, Hilary, and Sam Williams will all perform, along with a host of other top-shelf performers such as Rodney Crowell, Suzy Boggus, and S.G. Goodman.
But these are just the beginning. See a (mostly) complete list of events scheduled for around the world below. Once again, the Grand Ole Opry is curiously absent from a commemoration. If there is an event you know of that is not included, please feel free to alert everyone below in the comments section.
Sunday, September 17th will be a national country music holiday if there ever was one. Whether you attend a formal event or just celebrate by spinning a Hank record, it’s a time to remember the Hillbilly Shakespeare.
What: The Hank Williams Museum Presents: Hank Williams Centennial Birthday Celebration
Where: Montgomery, Alabama, Davis Theater
When: September 15th-17th
Who: Rhonda Vincent, Gene Watson, David Ball, David Church, Leona and Ron Williams, Zachariah Malachi & The Nashville Counts, Perley Curtis Band, Jason Petty, and more.
Official wreath laying at the grave of Hank Williams at 8:30 AM on September 17th. There will also be performances in front of Hank’s blue Cadillac at the Hank Williams museum throughout the weekend.
To purchase tickets and for more information, CLICK HERE.
What: Hank’s 100th: A Concert in Celebration of Hank Williams
Where: Country Music Hall of Fame, Nashville, TN CMA Theater
When: Thursday, September 21st, 3:30-5:00 PM (part of AmericanaFest)
Who: Hilary Williams, Holly Williams, Sam Williams, Suzy Bogguss, Laura Cantrell, Della Mae, Rodney Crowell, S.G. Goodman, Brennen Leigh, Delbert McClinton, Charlie McCoy, Chuck Mead, Wendy Moten, Connie Smith, and more.
What: Hank Williams 100th Birthday Sing-a-Long
Where: Shreveport Municipal Auditorium, Shreveport, LA
When: Sunday September 17th 2:00-2:30 PM
The Shreveport Municipal Auditorium was an important place in the Hank Williams legacy as the home of the Louisiana Hayride that embraced Hank Williams after he was fired from the Grand Ole Opry. It is also where he married his second wife.
Free to attend with a short presentation and then a sing-a-long. Birthday cake will be served as well.
What: Hank Williams 100th Birthday Celebration for Music Health Alliance
Where: Eastside Bowl, Nashville, TN
When: Sunday, September 17th, 8-10 PM
Who: Hosted by The Royal Hounds with appearances by Nathan Belt, Emily Kidd, The Farmer & Adele, Aaron Till, and more (see above).
All tips go to Music Health Alliance.
What: Hank Williams 100th B-Day Bash with Nashville Honeymoon
Where: Ivy Room, Albany, California
When: Sunday, September 17th, Doors at 2 PM
Who: Nashville Honeymoon, Laura Benitez and Bryan Kilgore, Aaron Burnham, Hank and Ella with The Fine Country Band, Jill Rogers and Myles Boisen, Danny Uzilvsky, Maurice Tani, Essence Goldman, Jody Richardson, Margaret Belton
This will be the West Coast’s major event.
What: I’ll Never Get Out Of This World Alive: Hank Williams Sr. 100th Birthday Tribute
Where: Gashill Drinking Room
When: Thursday September 21st
Who: John Howie Jr., The Bo Stevens, Ramona and the Holy Smokes
Tickets at theramkat.com.
What: Hank Williams 100th Birthday Celebration
Where: dB’s, Utrecht, The Netherlands
When: Sunday, September 17th
Who: The Wieners, The Bluegrass Boogiemen
“Reden voor een muzikaal eerbetoon aan deze meest invloedrijke country-muzikant aller tijden. Op het podium hebben we twee bands die hun liefde voor Hank Williams nooit onder stoelen of banken gestoken hebben: onze ‘eigen’ BLUE GRASS BOOGIEMEN en THE WIENERS.”
Montgomery Performing Arts Centre, Montgomery, AL, Darrell Scott, Sunday, September 17th, performance of Scott singing the blues of Hank Williams.
Josephine Arts Center, Josehpine, AL, September 15th, Dale Sharpe & Thomas Roughton’s (King of the Steel Guitar) Country Crossroads Band, starts at 5:30 PM.
The Squire Lounge, Denver, CO, September 16th, Skank Williams (playing an all Hank Williams Set), Dryer Fire, The Schofields. Starts at 8:00 PM.
Judson & Moore Distillery, Chicago, IL, September 17th, Toadvine hosts some of Chicago’s finest voices singing Hank Williams songs.
City Winery, Nashville, TN, September 17th BRUNCH show with Brian Ashley Jones and Hank You! Hank Williams Tribute Band.
Orange Blossom Opry, Weirsdale, Florida, Saturday September 16th, Alvin Anders – Hank Williams Sr 100th Birthday Tribute with Orange Blossom Opry Band
Sunflower Public House, Carrick Hill, Belfast, Ireland, September 17th, all proceeds from the event will go to support the ‘Chest, Heart and Stroke NI’ (CHSNI) charity.
Bell Works, Holmdel, NJ, Sunday September 10th, Pat Guadagno and his Lonesome Cowboys host with numerous special guests.
Nietzsche’s, Buffalo, NY, Thursday September 21st, with the All Hank Band and special guests.
Commercial Hotel, Terang, Australia, September 15th -17th with the Pete Daffy Trio. Reservations “essential.”
Glasgow’s Grand Ole Opry, Glasgow, UK, Sunday, September 17th, John Miller and his Country Casuals bring you a one-off special night of Hank Williams greatest songs.
George Lane St Kilda, Melbourne, Australia, Sunday, September 17th, George Lane presents a band of highly acclaimed musicians who are very familiar with Hank’s music.
Wakulla Community Center, Crawfordville, FL, Sunday September 17th, Anna Elizabeth Wescoat and friends, backed by a three-piece band, including pedal steel guitar player Bob Rhea, will be covering all Hank’s greatest songs. Tickets $45.
Golden Dagger, Chicago, IL, Saturday, September 16th with Lydia Cash, Michelle Billingsley, Reilly Downes, Brandon Good, Naomi Ashley, Greg Garing, Tommy Goodroad, Wild Earp & house band.
Lawrence Arts Center, Lawrence, KS, Tuesday, September 12th, a night with Exhibitions Director Ben Ahlvers as he discusses his most recent curatorial project, the group exhibition, Lonesome: Hank Williams’ 100th. Exhibit brings together 12 artists from around the world.
The Donkey Venue, Leicester, UK, Friday, September 15th.
Hillfolk, TN, September 23rd, with Jackomo Cajun Country Band, all day.