On This Day: Hank Williams Records 3 Hit Songs in One Day in 1950

by Matthew Wilson

It takes some artists years to produce a hit. But Hank Williams just wasn’t any singer. He managed to record three popular hits all in one day.

Now that’s some work ethic. On this day in 1950, Williams recorded “Long Gone Lonesome Blues,” “Why Don’t You Love Me” and “My Son Calls Another Man Daddy.”

That was a productive recording session at Castle Studios, Nashville 71 years ago. Upon release, “Long Gone Lonesome Blues” became just Williams’ second No. 1 hit of his career. The tune managed to stay at the top of the chart for five weeks and stayed on the charts for 21 weeks total.

Not bad for a song that initially stumped Williams during its development. In 1950, Williams had the song title but little else. It ended up being similar to Williams’ previous No. 1 hit “Lovesick Blues,” forming a duology of lovesickness. Williams actually got the song’s first lyrics while on a fishing trip.

Inspiration didn’t strike him, but songwriter Vic McAlpin who noticed the singer seemed preoccupied. He told Williams, “You come here to fish or watch the fish swim by?”

Williams knew then that would be the opening line to his song and paid off the songwriter for his contribution.

Hank Williams Records Two Other Hit Songs

As for Williams’ other two hits of the day, “Why Don’t You Love Me” was partially autobiographical. Williams’ relationship with his wife Audrey was the inspiration behind the song. The two had a rocky relationship that they struggled to make work. In fact, they ended up divorcing two years after the song and one year before Williams’ death.

But rather than being all doom and gloom, the song is actually lighthearted nature with the singer poking fun at his problems and wayward nature.

For the third song in the trilogy, “My Son Calls Another Man Daddy” wasn’t as popular as the previous two. It only reached No. 9 on the country singles chart. But the tune was heartbreaking and employed a sentimentality that made it memorable. The tune sings of a jailbird who reflects on the deterioration of his relationship with his son. Williams originally recorded the song almost a year prior. But he rerecorded it after being unsatisfied with the recording.

Williams always had a way with music that made him long lasting and one of the most important names in country music.