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HANK WILLIAM’S SUPER-STAR

HANK WILLIAM’S SUPER-STAR OPENING ACT COMES TO IOWA

     Anita, Iowa….. It was December, 1952.  Hank Williams
Sr., had already experienced many ups and downs in his meteoric country
music career.  In Charleston, West Virginia, a huge crowd waited for
him in a blistering snowstorm. His opening act was standing by.  Because
Hank could not make it due to the storm, the show was canceled and all
of the performers, including his opening act, was sent to  Canton, Ohio,
where they were to appear on a New Year’s Day matinee.  Then they got
the news.  Hank Williams was dead.  An eerie shock-driven hush filled
the auditorium.  After a time, Hawkshaw Hawkins decided the show must go
on, each performer making a tribute to Hank.  One by one the acts
slowly made their way to the stage, each singing a Hank Williams song. 
The opening act sang “Mansion On A Hill.” That opening act was June
Webb.
     Before she became the very important opening act for
Hank Williams, this young beautiful blonde was asked to audition for Roy
Acuff, the king of country music.  The night she sang for Acuff, she
performed “I Cried Again.” to a hootin’ and hollerin’ crowd.  Acuff
signed her on the spot.  She became known as the ‘prettiest Smoky
Mountain Boy.”  From this experience she received Billboard Magazine’s
prestigious “Most Promising Female Vocalist” award.  She performed
everywhere Acuff went.  She was hugely popular on the USO tours, which
gave her an opportunity to show her support for the military. 
     Webb signed with RCA Records, working closely with
Chet Atkins.  Atkins considered June Webb to be among the top three
guitarists in country music, along with himself and Grady Martin.  With
her amazing ability to sing, she added her instrumental abilities to her
performances. She began touring with Jim Reeves and the Everly
Brothers, and a host of other acts produced by Chet Atkins. 
     In 2011 June Webb was inducted into America’s Old Time
Country Music Hall of Fame’ at the National Old Time Country Music
Festival held annually in LeMars, Iowa.  She had been retired from show
business for about 30 years, but the experience was a delight for her. 
Now she is returning to Iowa on May 31st, for a very special concert at
the Oak Tree Performance Center in Anita.  She will be honoring not only
the military which she has such high regard for, she will
also be paying tribute to her two fellow performing artists, Hank
Williams and Roy Acuff.  Showtime is 7pm with reserved seats at $10,
available by calling 712-762-4363.
It should also be noted that Ms. Webb is doing this concert as a
fundraiser for the Pioneer Music Museum, also located in Anita.  It’s to
help fix a leaking roof on the building that contains her Hall of Fame
display.
     joining Ms. Webb, as the opening act, which they
treasure, is Smithsonian recording artists, Bob & Sheila Everhart.
This is the couple that produce and manage the National Old Time Music
Festival in LeMars, Iowa, and are also the proprietors of the Oak Tree
Performance Center in Anita, and the ones responsible for bringing Ms.
Webb out of retirement.  According to Bob Everhart, “June Webb has one
of the most magnificent voices I’ve heard in my lifetime.  It is a real
pleasure for my wife Sheila and I to be the opening act for this
gracious lady.”
     Also on the program is backing musicians Rick &
Harriette Andersen and David Green, and special vocalists Francis Hahn
and Marge Lund.
     More information is available on the Everhart’s website www.ntcma.net

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