A Picture from Life’s Other Side

Today’s post was written by Paul.

man with guitar

September 17, was Hank Williams, Sr.’s birthday, so I thought I would try to do one of his songs to mark the occasion.

“A Picture from Life’s Other Side” is not a song I ever sang before, and not my favorite Hank song, but it crossed my mind the other day. After a verse and chorus, I realized that G was too low for me and moved up to A.

Hank did the song as a recitation under the pseudonym “Luke the Drifter.” He only sang the chorus. He spoke the rest of the words.

When I was a teenager, I heard Mark Wheeler of the Marksmen sing all the lyrics, with no talking. So I knew it was doable with a little massaging or tweaking of the syllables and words. I failed to do this correctly on the verse about the brothers and had to stretch the word “lives” over too many beats.

Hank is one of my musical heroes. This song and many like it show how in touch he was with the darker, sadder side of life, even though he was only in his 20’s when he made his music. I might make uploading a Hank song an annual tradition on his birthday. There’s certainly a vast goldmine of masterfully written songs to choose from!

Right now on PBS, there’s a Ken Burns documentary running called “Country Music.” If you like this kind of music, you might find it interesting.

I hope you enjoyed the song from Paul. It’s an amazing song even thought it’s a tear-jerker. I’m not sure I’ve ever heard Hank Williams’ version, but I about wore out the tape I  had of Mark Wheeler and the Marksmen doing the song.


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  • Reply
    Mary Anne Johnson
    September 20, 2020 at 10:39 am

    Surre portrays life’ s othet side. Thanks to Paul.

  • Reply
    October 11, 2019 at 1:10 am

    Great job on that ‘Life’s Other Side’, Paul!

    My late husband loved Hanks sad music – especially his story songs. Wish he’d lived to watch Ken Burns specials w/me!

  • Reply
    Debra Osborne Spindle
    September 27, 2019 at 3:40 pm

    I don’t think I’ve ever heard this Hank Williams song–which is saying something given the family in which I grew up. My Uncle Larry would take me with him up Highway 83 from Texas to South Dakota and sing or play Hank songs all 640 miles. We sang “I Saw The Light” at his funeral. No one wrote songs “in touch . . .with the darker, sadder side of life” better than Hank–as you say, and despite his youth. Thank you for sharing–I loved the Country Music documentary–the soundtrack to my childhood.

  • Reply
    Ron Seals
    September 27, 2019 at 12:35 pm

    Wow, did he nail that song. This song and Thy Burdens are Greater That Mine are my two favorite ‘Luke the Drifter’ songs.

  • Reply
    Mary Lou McKillip
    September 25, 2019 at 5:40 pm

    Tipper I enjoyed hearing as a small girl Carl Story and I believe his band was called the Rambling Mountaineers He could really sing the song A picture from Life Other Side

  • Reply
    Wanda Devers
    September 23, 2019 at 10:39 am

    I liked this so much & do remember hearing Hank Williams doing it. I had a set of albums with the majority of his music on them.

  • Reply
    Kenneth Ryan
    September 22, 2019 at 1:24 pm

    I enjoyed the song, Paul. Can’t remember ever hearing it.

  • Reply
    Ken Roper
    September 22, 2019 at 11:39 am

    I can hear Pap’s voice thru Paul as he was singing “A Picture From Life’s Other Side.” It’s sad, but aren’t most country songs? Paul did a great job on this song, and he writes about the same as you. You are the Best at saying things ” down to earth things” that ever I can understand.

    The other day Sargent Williams and his boy, Justin met me at Wal-Marts to pick out me a TV. They helped me set it up and before long, I had a beautiful picture on the Aziva 43″ I had chosen. While we were waiting on all the channels to be put in, Sargent Williams asked me to show his boy the rest of the shop. I said “that wouldn’t take long, besides the other day, I had Diarrhea and
    I learned Big Words cause I graduated from Andrews.” This broke the Ice with Justin and he was amazed at the things in my shop. …Ken

  • Reply
    Don Casada
    September 22, 2019 at 10:33 am

    Absolutely wonderful job. More Paul, please.

  • Reply
    September 22, 2019 at 9:53 am

    Well done Paul. I’ve never heard that song but I sure remember “Hey, Good Looking” and some others that Hank Williams wrote and sang. My husband has been in and out of the hospital this summer, but he had set the t.v., to record the Ken Burns Country Music documentary and we have been watching it for the last couple evenings. Very much enjoying it!!

  • Reply
    September 22, 2019 at 9:51 am

    Mom and Dad were first folks I knew to get one of those large floor model radios with record player. We children were allowed to put records on and listen to that old radio unless Dad was home from work 🙂 I remember that song so well, and often heard Hank Williams songs. I well remember when he died, and it was treated as a great tragedy by the folks around us. Later when we moved it was close to the route 19 where he supposedly died. Later named The Hank Williams Memorial Highway near Oak Hill WV. Listening to the old music may be why I was never able to accept and like the modern country. I am certain Hank would be proud of Paul’s version, as he does a wonderful job on this old song. I bet he could really do well on my favorite at the time, Hank Thompson and Detour. Dad took in a young man who had family problems (could not do that nowadays), and he earned money and bought Frankie Laine and Johnny Ray records, and I love that sound even today. I collected all Frankie Laine’s albums at one time.
    If interested this is a drive down the old remote highway where Hank W took his last ride. If not permitted can delete.

  • Reply
    September 22, 2019 at 9:26 am

    Very good job on the song. We’ve been watching those documentaries also, seen some shots of my Wife’s Uncle in the background playing back up music on some of the episodes back in the day. Just fascinating how a poor boy was able to position himself to play for and with some of the best in the business.

  • Reply
    September 22, 2019 at 9:07 am

    It is so good to hear Paul singing. It would be wonderful to hear his beautiful voice more often. Paul, you are missed! I had forgotten about this insightful song. The “Country Music” documentary is so good, especially the first few episodes.

  • Reply
    Bill Burnett
    September 22, 2019 at 8:19 am

    Great job Paul, this is one of my favorite tear jerkers.

  • Reply
    Danette Drennen
    September 22, 2019 at 7:57 am

    Paul’s rendition of this Hank Williams classic is as beautiful as the song. Thank you so much for sharing it with us! I am a WV girl (now living in the northeast) who is currently loving the Ken Burns Country Music documentary. It is truly fascinating.

    Best to you and the family, Tipper. Thanks again for this lovely post. It really made my morning.

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