Who was/is Tom T. Hall ? - CDs, Vinyl LPs, DVD and more
Tom T. Hall
Tom T. Hall
"He was like a human demo," said Mercury's Jerry Kennedy of Tom T. Hall. "His music publisher, Jimmy Key, would bring him in. Jimmy had brought us Dave Dudley, and he would bring in Tom with songs he thought would fit Dave. Then one day Jimmy said, 'What would you think about recording Tom?' It hadn't crossed my mind. He was so quiet and shy. He'd sing his demos and leave." At Kennedy's insistence, Tom Hall became Tom T. Hall to differentiate him from Tom Tall and Tompall Glaser.
Signed in 1967, Hall first cracked the Top 10 with Ballad Of Forty Dollars. He wrote prolifically, and one morning sang an untitled song to his wife, Dixie Deen. “It was a bitter and hard look at old time funerals that took place in my town when I was a kid,” he said. “When I was thirteen or fourteen, I worked in a graveyard as a summertime job. I helped dig the graves and carry the chairs. It dawned on me then how much hypocrisy was involved. Yesterday, he was a son-of-a-bitch. Today, he was a great old guy that meant well. I didn't take that song with me when I went to see Jimmy Key. We were listening to tapes when Key went to answer the phone. When he came back, he said, 'That was Dixie. Sing the one about forty dollars.' I sang it. He snapped his fingers and said, 'That's the one.'” And so it was.
It reached #4, establishing Hall in his niche. He would relate cracker barrel homilies, short stories, and tall tales. He'd sing them in a comfortable, rumpled voice that made you feel as if you were sitting across the table. The rhymes were often weak, betraying the speed with which he wrote, but the songs had an engaging humanity.
Tom T. Hall Ballad Of Forty Dollars - Homecoming
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