Posts Tagged ‘Jett Williams’

Jett Williams troubles

No one has done more to promote and enhance the stature of Hank Williams than his daughter Jett.

She’s been having some tough times since sudden unforeseen death her husband Keith last year.

Let’s trust that things will eventually work out for the best and she will be back concentrating on her work soon. A tough go I’m sure  without Keith.


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I was hopeful that attorney Keith Adkinson, the husband of Jett Williams, might be able to untangle some of  mysteries surrounding the untimely death of Hank Williams on his final journey to a show in the last days of 1952. Adkinson and Williams had vowed in a Newsletter last year to tackle and solve the 60 year old mystery once and for all.

Sadly the untimely death of Adkinson, who successfully proved Jett Williams was the legitimate daughter of Hank Williams and co heir to his estate, will  now be cut short.

I have received thousands of visitors to a blog posting I did on this issue. HERE. Make sure you read the comments section which has articles from people claiming special knowledge of the death of Hank Williams.

A lot of the interest in the death of hank Williams has been stirred up by the recent film ‘The Last Ride’ which has just come out on DVD, Blu Ray and download.

Here’s a list of all the Blog Posts I’ve done on the film. There sure are a lot!

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The distinguished lawyer who changed the Hank Williams universe is dead.

Keith Adkinson took the case of Jett Williams and established her claim as the daughter of Hank Williams and her claim to half of the estate. This took many years of complex legal action, and many appeals ending I believe in the Tennessee Supreme Court. Along the way Adkinson married his client Jett Williams.

He was 69 and had recently undergone heart surgery.

I just want to say that in my opinion watching from afar, Keith and Jett never did anything to detract from the reputation of Hank Williams as a great world artistic figure. In fact they greatly enhanced it with the fine respectful, intelligent ,and not exploitive presentation of the Mother’s Best Radio Shows which had added so much to the Hank Williams legacy.

Adkinson, a Washington lawyer originally, died in Nashville where he resided with Jett and ran an active law firm.

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Hank Williams’ daughter Jett Williams, the film’s director Harry Thomason and the producer Benjy Gaither will attend a free first showing of ‘The Last Ride’ in New York City on June 20th. Seating is first come first served.

The three will participate in a panel discussion following the showing at The New School at 66 West 12th Street New York NY at 6pm.

The title of the panel discussion seems very appropriate:  I Saw the Light: Hank Williams’ Sixty Years of Influence on American music.

As listed in the previous post, the film will open for one week at Cinema Village at 22 East 12th Street on June 22.

Here is a link to the press release from the school.

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The 33rd Hank Williams’ Festival in Georgiana Alabama will feature Moe Bandy, Larry Gatlin and Jett Williams as well as many other entertainers.

The yearly festival is held on the grounds of the Hank Williams Boyhood Home and Museum. Outdoor concerts featuring a full lineup of performers take place Friday and Saturday evenings, June 1 and 2, 2012. Events run through the day Saturday.

The program with ticket information is HERE.

And the Museum website is here.

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This is the best news concerning Hank Williams’ biography and his  mysterious death I have  heard in a long time. Now we should start to get some answers you can trust. Keith Adkinson, Jett Williams’ husband, from what I can determine, is a tenacious very competent attorney who has already scored two huge victories on Hank Williams’ issues in the courts.

Remember Keith won Jett a share of the Hank Williams estate and then won full ownership of the Mother’s Best recordings for Jett Williams and Hank Williams Jr. To win these battles “The Duo” as they call themselves tackled and beat very powerful wealthy and entrenched interests aligned to protect the Hank Williams estate and the ownership of a very valuable property. The famous Mother’s Best acetates had been thrown in the trash by WSM before being rescued and preserved by an employee. In the end I think ownership was claimed by just about everybody involved, the rescuer, the radio station, recording company, publisher and of course Jett and Hank Jr. Adkinson beat them all.

Kieth Adkinson is a shrewd sharp Washington lawyer who from what I understand never gives up and is dogged and determined in pursuing any cause he decides to take on. Before undertaking the Jett Williams’ case in 1982 he had worked on a variety of legal issues,and become a prominent Washing attorney including work for Congressional Committee and the  Reagan campaign. He married Jett Williams in 1986, and now practices law in Nashville.

In the latest issue of the Jett Williams’ newsletter to fans it’s clear that Keith and Jett are really getting serious about the mysteries surrounding the death of Hank Williams on an ill conceived dangerous trip from Montgomery to Canton Ohio on the New Years’ Eve Weekend in 1952-53. According to the article Jett is using her Sirious/XM radio show to report on their findings.

Here’s the link to the newsletter   UPDATE: This link no longer works..HWJ which has a 4 page article called “Was Hank Williams’ Death a Homicide?” Pretty explosive stuff. 

Interestingly, I have received a few comments on this blog concerning this issue, one of which comes from the son of a prominent figure mentioned in the Jett Williams’ report, as well as some from Hank Williams’ newsletter author Beecher O’Quinn.

For some reason 29 comments mostly about the death of Hank Williams including the one from Howard Surface came on this rather obscure blog post among the many I have written on the movie ‘The Last Ride’.

I am more interested in Hank Williams’ works, reputation, legacy, and his survival into future generations than details of his biography and death, about which I admit I am not well-informed.

But when this movie news started coming out I did make some comments on Hank’s last days which come about half way down this blog posting. 

Not many people have made the observations I did on that post. My feelings are based on intuition not research I guess, but I am very happy to see Keith Adkinson on this  baffling story of Hank’s tragic, sad last days on earth.

I know one thing for sure, if Keith and Jett spend the time and resources on this as they appear to be doing, I think their integrity would be enough for me to accept their conclusions, whatever they are,  and put the issue to rest, finally.

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Hank Williams will be remembered in Nashville on the anniversary of his death. Jett Williams will host the Midnight Jamboree program from the Ernest Tubb Record Shop, Texas Troubadour Theatre.

The program will be broadcast live on WSM. The program starts at midnight.

January 1, is the 59th anniversary of Hank Williams’s death on New Years Day 1953 near Oak Hill West Virginia.

You can listen live to WSM on the internet.

The WSM home page is here; it includes a button to “listen Live”.

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The new Hank Williams based movie ‘The Last Ride’ was screened several times last week at the Little Rock Film Festival. The movie was directed by well known Arkansas film maker Harry Thomason. It stars Henry Thomas as a Hank Williams based character.

The name Hank Williams is not used in the movie and apparently the sound track does not include Hank Williams music.

‘The Last Ride’ received a negative review in The Arkansas Times which I linked to in the previous post. However, comments on a ‘Last Ride’ Facebook page are positive.

A Little Rock TV interview Jett Williams strongly endorses the movie. She says she was “blown away” when she first saw the film. There are 4 Jett Williams’ songs on the soundtrack. She says she likes the way the film focusses on the relationship between the Hank Williams character and his fictionalized driver.

People who hang on every detail of the the Hank Williams’ biography will not like the liberties with the story which are taken here, I suspect. But Jett, at least, has accepted the filmmakers intention to tell a deeper story about the reality of Hank Williams life and death.

Here’s a link to the TV interview with Jett.

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The Hank Williams Festival in Georgiana Alabama wrapped up   with a Saturday night ‘mini Opry’ concert hosted by Jett Williams. The concert will be broadcast in June on WSM radio’s Ernest Tubb Midnight Jamboree. Attendance and ticket sales were strong for  both  Friday and Saturday  events at the park next to the Hank Williams Boyhood Home and Museum.

The Saturday concert featured Jim Ed Brown, Helen Cornelius, David Frizzell, Jimmy Fortune, and Razzy Bailey as well as  Jett Williams. The Jamboree website lists June 4 as the date of the broadcast but there are few details. WSM broadcasts on the internet so the world wide family of readers of this blog will be able to tune in.

Here are some links:

The Ernest Tubb Midnight Jamboree schedule. Looks like June 4 will be the date.

Here’s the WSM homepage where you can find a link to listen to the broadcasst.

Here’s the article in the Greenville Advocate.

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‘The Last Ride’ a film about the death of Hank Williams starring Henry Thomas  is being shown at film festivals. The movie is directed by Harry Thomason an Arkansas native and was filmed in that state. It will be shown at the Little Rock Film Festival in early June. ‘The Last Ride’ has been shown at the Nashville Film Festival and at the USA Film Festival in Dallas.

Reports from viewers seem to indicate the film has been well received, however there really haven’t been any formal newspaper, magazine or TV reviews at this point. So the showings at the festivals are being treated as previews.

The film was screened at Nashville on April 14 to 20. New films with Kris Kristofferson, Chely Wright, and Levon Helm also highlighted the Nashville festival.

‘The Last Ride’ was one of a number of big name movies shown at the Dallas festival from April 27 to May 1.

There is a Facebook page with comments on ‘The Last Ride’ It is HERE.

At the Little Rock Film Festival June 1 to 5, ‘The Last Ride’ will be honored as the opening night film for the festival.

Director Harry Thomason was interviewed on the festival’s blog. He says he had to get permission from Charles Carr, Hank’s driver on the last ride from Montgomery destined for Canton Ohio, in order to make the film. He says the Williams’ family was reluctant to support the movie at first, but Jett Williams has now seen it and has offered her support.  And she attended the world premier at the Nashville festival.

A posting on Facebook indicates the film will be released on DVD in September.

Finally here is the Harry Thomason interview from the Little Rock Film Festival Blog.

And here is a list of all my posts on the subject of ‘The Last Ride’.

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