ENTERTAINMENT

Hank Williams Sr. concert in Greencastle Sunday to recount life of the country singer

PAT FRIDGEN
Robbie Limon as Hank Williams in Wayside theatre's production of "Hank Williams: The Lonesome Road"

Sunday’s concert, sponsored by the Greencastle-Antrim Chamber of Commerce, will bring Hank Williams Sr. to life, and the audience will hear a song never before presented to the public.

Robbie Limon will appear as Williams at 3 p.m. at Greencastle-Antrim High School. He has been performing the role for eight years.

“There’s one song in the show no one has ever heard,” he said by phone Monday.

Back in 1952, Williams was at a barn dance and heard Buddy Allen, a renowned yodeler, singing backstage. Williams asked if he could record “You Can’t Keep Me From Loving You.” Allen said sure.

However, Williams died Jan. 1, 1953, at age 29, a month before he was scheduled to record the song in a studio. Limon met Allen, now deceased, and got permission to use the song.

Limon will bring his band for “Lovesick Blues: The Life and Music of Hank Williams Sr.” A narrator will tell the story of the crooner’s short life, with the music performed chronologically. The band will include a steel guitar, upright bass, guitar and fiddle.

Limon said he fell into Williams’ character when an acquaintance invited him to try out for a stage role, based on his looks and voice. “I’d never acted before. It was a wonderful experience and now I have the acting bug.”

He likes Williams’ repertoire. “His songs are so true to life. There’s not a person in this country that can’t relate to them. It’s really good stuff.”

Among the most popular tunes are Lovesick Blues,  Cold Cold Heart, Jambalaya and I Saw the Light. Limon will perform for 90 minutes, and has one unexpected part in the show for the audience.

The star lives in Middleton, Va. and is a jeweler in Bethesda, Md. He stressed that his show is different than the one performed at the Totem Pole Playhouse last year.

Fundraiser

The concert is a fundraiser for the chamber. Board of directors president Chris Grimm said it was important to raise revenue to offset expenses for annual events. The proceeds would be used to continue sponsoring Heritage Christmas, Sidewalk Days and other community activities, and even to tend to the needs of the aging chamber building.

Tickets for the concert are $20 and may be purchased at Carl’s Drug Store, Studio II and the chamber office.