Hank Williams was well-known for his “heartbreak” songs, but this one’s just a bit different.
You’re on the Sound Beat.
“Kaw-Liga” was originally written as a…more-serious song about two Native American lovers. But collaborating songwriter Fred Rose convinced Williams to re-write, telling instead the story of two wooden cigar store “Indians”.
Some claim it was a nod to a Native American settlement, others claim it was a more blatant nod to an actual wooden statue. What we know is this: In August 1952, Hank stayed at a cabin at Lake Martin in Alabama, where he wrote this song and Your Cheatin’ Heart. Both were released by MGM in early 1953 and spent a combined 20 weeks on top of the Country charts.
This episode was written by Emily Procopio, part of the Sound Beat Class Partnership.
Photo: Courtesy of Papahazama, via Flickr, used under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic.