The Essential Hank Snow
Although he eventually became one of the most recognizable stars in Nashville, Hank Snow originally hailed from Nova Scotia, and his freewheeling songs always reflected something of Canada’s open skies and crystal air. Over a 45-year career with RCA Victor, Snow racked up more than 70 singles on the Billboard country charts. The Essential Hank Snow spans the years 1950 to 1974, giving some sense of this diminutive star’s off-kilter charisma. He wasn’t afraid to experiment with global rhythms on “The Rhumba Boogie” and “The Gal Who Invented Kissin’,” while the sultry honky-tonk of “I Don’t Hurt Anymore” proved to be a significant influence on the young Elvis Presley. Snow instinctively grasped the feel of American honky-tonk, but there is an underlying lilt to “Music Makin’ Mama from Memphis” and “Would You Mind” that betrays the influence of older British folk ballads, gleaned from a childhood in Nova Scotia. Ultimately, Snow will always be associated with his traveling songs, which alight with the eternal thrill of the open road. “I’m Movin’ On” and “I’ve Been Everywhere” will live as long as people have a hunger to hit the highway.