Hank Williams Jr. Gave Perfect Country Boy Speech at Country Music Hall of Fame Induction

by Maria Hartfield

Country music star Hank Williams Jr. celebrated his induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame recently. The ceremony took place on Nov. 21, and the singer had a lot to say about receiving the long-awaited honor.

Hank Williams Jr. made his first recording in 1964 and soon established himself as a talented musician outside of his famous father’s decorated career. However, despite his many accolades, Williams’ induction wasn’t announced until last year. The singer even wrote a song about his disappointment at not being a member in 2015. The song is titled “Just Call Me Hank.”

Hank Williams Jr. Speech Is Short and Sweet

In accepting the highly anticipated award, Williams made a short speech joking that he wouldn’t be there if the induction were the day before.

“Well, the good thing is this didn’t happen yesterday, which was the opening day of deer season, which is kind of like squirrel season was with my father,” Hank said, according to Saving Country Music. “My little 6-year-old grandson sitting out there with his .44 Magnum Ruger, took his first deer.”

He continued leading audiences to believe a longer speech was coming. It was expected, after all, considering his long wait to join the Country Music Hall of Fame.

“A lot of people to thank. And I know who they are. They know who they are. That part about the family with the open arms? Well, that might have been a little bit different in my case,” he said. He ended the speech by referencing several of his popular songs, saying, “But, I went to Muscle Shoals, Alabama. And all my rowdy friends are coming over tonight. I was born to boogie. And this is a family tradition.”

The speech in its entirety lasted under two minutes. Compared to other 2020 inductees, Hank’s select words were short and sweet.

Country Music Hall of Fame Names Class of 2021

The Country Music Hall of Fame announced its class of 2021 inductees on Monday. The list includes The Judds, Ray Charles, Eddie Bayers, and Pete Drake.

Hank Williams Jr. is the son of legendary country music star Hank Williams. The patriarch was one of the first inductees into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1961.

Williams worked hard to get out from underneath his father’s shadow. He released his breakthrough album, Hank Williams Jr. & Friends, in 1975 and continued to score hits throughout the 1990s. His hit single “A Country Boy Can Survive” was re-recorded after the 9/11 terrorist attacks as “America Will Survive.”

In 1984, Williams released “All My Rowdy Friends Are Coming Over Tonight,” which became the opening theme song for Monday Night Football from 1989 to 2011. Eventually, ESPN brought the song back in 2017, adding Florida Georgia Line and Jason Derulo to the mix. They ended up dropping the song again before the start of the 2020 season.