Hank Williams fans, prepare to feast: On Sept. 28, Time Life will release “Complete Mothers Best Recordings…Plus!,” a 16-disc set comprising all 72 of the surviving 15-minute radio shows recorded by the late country music legend for Mothers Best Flour in 1951.
Time Life has issued two three-CD sets of material from the shows — “The Unreleased Recordings” (2008) and “Revealed” (2009) — but the forthcoming package will encompass all 143 of the musical performances Williams recorded, plus plenty of the singer-songwriter’s relaxed backwoods banter. The shows, which Williams recorded for airplay on Southern radio stations, included a number of tunes he never released commercially.
The music — rescued from a Dumpster outside the Nashville studios of WSM by a station employee — will be take up 15 CDs; a bonus documentary DVD will include interviews with members of Williams’ working band the Drifting Cowboys. A booklet of more than 100 pages will feature an introduction by Hank Williams Jr. and notes by music historian Colin Escott, who won a Grammy in 1999 for co-producing “The Complete Hank Williams,” Mercury’s comprehensive boxed set of Ol’ Hank’s studio sides.
As if it weren’t jazzy enough, the “Mothers Best” collection will be housed in a working replica of a vintage radio — when the listener presses the dial, selections by Williams will play.