Hank by Greg Trooper
Songwriter Greg Trooper, who had songs recorded by Vince Gill and Steve Earle, diedfrom pancreatic cancer at age 61 in January 2017. In 2011 when I was struggling t find the confidence to sing in public I decided to learn the 2010 top three billboard songs of the year. For some reason this song has stuck with me and remains a regular part of my solo shows. I love the simplicity of songwriting that belies an utter mastery of craft. Trooper had a knack for dropping emotional pennies just at the perfect point in his songs which work as powerful reveals.
The song follows the life story of a homeless man called Bill (though his name has been changed by those who know him now). Over the course of just verses you get the whole of a man's poignant life story and it seems from the many times I've performed this song most of us know somebody a bit like Hank. Though probably not well enough.