Hank Beach: A Country Poet

Hank Beach is not the first country music personality to come out of Kentucky (Loretta Lynn)—and of course, he’s not the first “Hank” to record for MGM Records (Hank Williams)—but the similarity doesn’t just stop there. For Hank Beach got into the business of country music by writing a song that Loretta Lynn recorded, “Journey To The End Of My World,” and he possesses the same unique qualities of writing and singing that MGM’s first Hank had.
Hank Beach was born in a place called Rabbit Hill, Kentucky, which is right below Pilot Knob. (If that still doesn’t ring a bell, both aren’t far from Bowling Green.) Like every country boy thereabouts, Hank learned to pick and grin at an early age, and even though it’s just an hour drive from Nashville, Tennessee—The Country Music Capital Of The World—Hank literally traveled around the world before trying his skills in Nashville. He sang in hundreds of Honky-Tonks and served many years in the United States Air Force, which took him all over the world. Hank is now in the process of writing his life story in a book entitled, From Rabbit Hill to Nashville. Hank has been in country music all his life, with 45 years on Music Row. If you want to know the truth about the music business, be sure to get yourself a copy of his book when it becomes available.
While on duty with the Air Force, Hank was a top country DJ for the Armed Forces Radio & Television Services (AFRTS) where he performed the duties as host and engineer on “Stickbuddy Jamboree” and “Country Hoedown.” Hank was also an announcer and engineer for the network. He wrote, directed and hosted a one hour documentary, ”The Hank Williams Story,” for the network, telling about Williams’ life in words and songs. He received several awards, citations and commendations for his work. Hank and his band, The Drifters, performed live on the AFRTS’s Radio and Television Network and was master of ceremonies on numerous variety-type presentations.
It was this vast experience that inspired Hank to put down his thoughts in lyrics on cafe’ napkins or in ten-cent notebooks, and that eventually brought him to Nashville to be a writer. In doing so, he wrote and recorded his songs on demonstration sessions for many of Nashville’s leading publishers. It wasn’t long before Hank Beach found himself with an MGM recording contract, and his first self-penned release, “Your Warm Love,” was coming off the press.

Hank has since written songs that were recorded by some of the world’s greatest artists, including Con Hunley, Shania Twain, Tom Jones, Loretta Lynn, Gary Stewart, Vassar Clements, Warner Mack, George Riddles, and even a rock star called the Unknown Artist, recorded one of Hank’s country songs. Hank managed to publish most of these songs in his own publishing company, Stickbuddy Music.
And how has all this success in country music affected this Kentucky country boy? It’s obvious from his easy-going grin that he’s most thankful, but he remains a good-humored, sincere artist and songwriter from Rabbit Hill, Kentucky.
A Country News writer, Jimmy Helm, made this remark in his column at the beginning of Hank’s career in Nashville: “Hank has paid his dues in full and is ready for a brilliant career in country music, and once you hear the sincerity in his voice and songs, you’ll have to agree that country music is ready for another Hank!”
Enjoy Hank’s new monthly column “The Past With A Personal Touch” in Nashville Music Guide beginning this month.

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