January 1

If you’re a hardcore Americana/Country fan, the day is kind of melancholy.

Townes Van Zandt, one of the greatest songwriters of his generation and a long-suffering alcoholic, died of a cardiac arrhythmia after hip surgery at age 52.

And, the man who many consider the most significant singer/songwriter of the 20th Century and one of the most important country music artists of all time — Hank Williams — died of a heart attack brought on by a lethal cocktail of pills and alcohol aged 29.

Thirty-five of his singles (five released posthumously) were placed in the Top 10 of the Billboard Country & Western Best Sellers chart, 11 of which ranked at No.1, including ‘Cold, Cold Heart,’ ‘Hey, Good Lookin’, ‘I’ll Never Get Out of This World Alive,’ and ‘Your Cheatin’ Heart.’ During his last years Williams’s consumption of alcohol, morphine and painkillers severely compromised his professional life.

So, while you’re recovering today, play some Townes and Hank and listen to the words.