Award-winning country music star Hank Williams Jr. is bringing his live show to Daniel Island on Saturday at the Volvo Car Stadium. The “outlaw” country legend, fresh off an announcement he’ll be returning to ESPN’s Monday Night Football broadcasts this coming season, will be popping in for a one-night stop on his new tour. Williams Jr. has sold some 70 million albums worldwide throughout his career, including chart-toppers such as “Rowdy,” “The Pressure is On,” and “Habits Old and New.” We reached out to the popular singer-songwriter for a quick Q&A about what led him to Charleston and what fans can expect this weekend.
The Daniel Island News (DIN): At this point in your career obviously, you only need to tour or play live shows, what brought you out on tour this summer?
Hank Williams, Jr. (HWJ): I am very spoiled. I have some of the most hardcore loyal fans in this business. I only do about 25 shows a year and have for the past decade. I perform where I want, when I want, and for whom I want! So when my agent brings me offers, I just decide on where I have been in the recent few years and where I think I might like to go based on the weather that time of year.
DIN: Again, given you have the fan support to play anywhere at any time and draw well, what brought you to South Carolina, Charleston and specifically Daniel Island?
HWJ: My agent, Greg, sent me an offer and it routed perfectly with another show, so I was like why not?
DIN: What should fans expect in regards to what you’ll play at the July 22 show? Will you be featuring some of your newer music including songs from, say, 127 Rose Avenue?
HWJ: Well, 127 Rose Avenue was a few albums ago. I do a couple songs from my new album It’s About Time, which came out last year. But mostly, the fans want to hear the hits! I do some covers and I play the piano and do an acoustic set. So each show is different as I do not have a set list.
DIN: How has your sound evolved over the last 50 years / the last 20 / the last five?
HWJ: That’s interesting. I started out singing daddy’s songs and then years later created my own sound and identity. I guess you can listen to the last 20 albums and decide for yourself on how you think the sound changed.
DIN: In your eyes, what’s the state of the country music industry right now? Is there enough ‘rowdiness’ in it?
HWJ: Overall, you have to adapt to the new sounds of each generation. The music I was making early on is different than the music that started playing in the mid-70s. When I started playing my more rocking country stuff people would say to me that radio would not play it, that it was not the sound people were wanting. Then all of a sudden, I was winning awards and having #1 records. So some people say the same things about today’s artists and music, but remember one thing. Those artists are having #1 hits and selling out shows. So someone is paying attention.
DIN: Do you see yourself evolving as a musician going forward and even late in your life, such as Johnny Cash?
HWJ: If I want to make an album, I will. If I don’t, I won’t. I am not looking to reinvent myself. I think the fans know who I am and I am going to do what I want.
DIN: Having successfully done it yourself, what advice have you given your daughter, a country star in her own right, on emerging from her father’s shadow? Was it important for you and/or should it be important for her to create her own identity or does it just happen?
HWJ: I am happy that my kids wanted to play music. But I let them do what they want and really don’t get involved or give them advice. They have to do what they want and have fun with it.
DIN: I think it’s fair to say that football fans the world wide cheered the news that you were returning to ‘Monday Night Football’ in 2017 – are you as excited as we are?
HWJ: Yes, it was like going home. This year’s opening will be great. We added Florida Georgia Line and Jason Derulo to the opening, so I am interested to hear what the fans think about that.
For tickets to Hank Williams Jr.’s performance at Volvo Car Stadium on July 22, visit www.ticketmaster.com. The show starts at 7:30 p.m.