Family Tradition (album)

Family Tradition is the twenty-ninth studio album released by country music artist Hank Williams, Jr. It was released in April 1979 by Curb Records, his third studio album for the label.

Family Tradition
Family Tradition.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedApril 17, 1979
ProducerJimmy Bowen (tracks 6-9)
Phil Gernhard (track 10)
Ray Ruff (tracks 1-5)
Hank Williams, Jr. chronology
One Night Stand
Family Tradition
Whiskey Bent and Hell Bound
Singles from Family Tradition
  1. "Family Tradition"
    Released: May 28, 1979
Professional ratings
Review scores
allmusic4/5 stars[1]
Christgau's Record GuideC[2]

Critical and commercial successEdit

Family Tradition was a significant success, both critically and commercially for Williams. It peaked at number 3 on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart, making it Williams' first Top 5 album since 1969's Live at Cobo Hall. Four of the ten tracks were released as singles, the first single being "I Fought the Law". "I Fought the Law" was originally a hit for the rock & roll group The Bobby Fuller Four in the early 1960s and the song was a moderate success for Williams, peaking at number 15 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart. The follow up singles, "Old Flame, New Fire" and "To Love Somebody" had little success, only peaking at number 54 and number 49 respectively. The final single, the album's title track, "Family Tradition", would become one of Williams' most popular and recognized songs. It peaked at number 4 on the Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart, his first Top 10 single since 1974. Williams' performance received rave reviews by critics and he received his first Grammy nomination for Best Country Vocal Performance, Male. The album was also a significant commercial success for Williams, becoming only his second album to be certified Gold by the RIAA.

Track listingEdit

  1. "To Love Somebody" (Barry Gibb, Maurice Gibb, Robin Gibb) 3:08
  2. "Old Flame, New Fire" (Oskar Solomon) 2:37
  3. "Always Loving You" (Steve Young) 4:26
  4. "We Can Work It All Out" (Williams, Jr.) 2:20
  5. "I Fought the Law" (Sonny Curtis) 2:25
  6. "Family Tradition" (Williams, Jr.) 4:01
  7. "Only Daddy That'll Walk the Line" (Jimmy Bryant) 3:18
  8. "Paying on Time" (Allen Reynolds, Williams Jr.) 3:13
  9. "I've Got Rights" (Williams, Jr.) 3:35
  10. "I Just Ain't Been Able" (Williams, Jr.) 2:35


Year Single US
1978 "I Fought the Law" 15
"Old Flame, New Fire" 54
1979 "To Love Somebody" 49
"Family Tradition" 4


  • Hank Williams, Jr. - vocals, guitar
  • Reggie Young - electric guitar
  • Al Bruno, Jay Graydon, Jerry Wallace - guitar
  • Mac McAnally, Richard Bennett - acoustic guitar
  • Brad Felton - steel guitar
  • Bob Wray, Ray Pohlman, Reinie Press - bass
  • Charlie Daniels - fiddle
  • Alan Lindgren, Clayton Ivey, Don Randi, Greg Mathieson - keyboards
  • Billy M. Thomas, Chet McCracken, Roger Clark - drums
  • King Errisson - percussion
  • Muscle Shoals Horns - horns
  • Carol Chase, Jim Dugan, Karen McClain, Pam Johnze, Pat Erickson, Susie Allanson - background vocals
  • David Turner, Henry Ferber, James Getzoff, Murray Adler, Robert Lee Adcock, Sid Sharp, William Kurasch - violin
  • Jesse Ehrlich, Judy Perett, Raymond Kelley, Robert Lee Adcock - cello
  • Richard Hieronymus, John D'Andrea - arrangements
  • Jim Shea - photography


  1. ^ allmusic review
  2. ^ Christgau, Robert (1981). "Consumer Guide '70s: W". Christgau's Record Guide: Rock Albums of the Seventies. Ticknor & Fields. ISBN 089919026X. Retrieved March 22, 2019 – via