A Country Boy Can Survive

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"A Country Boy Can Survive"
Single by Hank Williams, Jr.
from the album The Pressure Is On
B-side Weatherman
Released January 18, 1982
Format Single
Recorded 1981
Genre Country
Length 4:16
Label Elektra/Curb
Writer(s) Hank Williams, Jr.
Producer(s) Jimmy Bowen
Hank Williams, Jr.
Hank Williams, Jr. singles chronology
"All My Rowdy Friends (Have Settled Down)"
(1981)
"A Country Boy Can Survive"
(1982)
"Honky Tonkin'"
(1982)

"A Country Boy Can Survive" is a song written and recorded by American country music artist Hank Williams, Jr. The song was released as a single in January 1982 and reached a peak of number 2 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles charts in March 1982.[1] It is considered one of Williams' signature songs even though it never reached number one.

Shortly after 9/11, Williams re-wrote and re-recorded the song with a patriotic theme under the name "America Will Survive"; the rewrite peaked at number 45 on the Billboard country charts.

In early 2007, Williams re-released the original version to commend the 25th anniversary of its original release, in addition to creating a music video for it. This re-release peaked at number 45 on the Billboard country charts.

The song has also gained popularity as the fight entrance song for UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes.

Content[edit]

The song exalts and lists many things that detail the everyday life of country dwellers.

The notable second verse mentions the narrator's relationship with a New York City businessman; despite their differing backgrounds the two become good friends and exchange gifts ("he'd send me pictures of the Broadway nights/And I'd send him some homemade wine"). However, the businessman is "killed by a man with a switchblade knife/for $43 my friend lost his life"; Williams replies that he would like to personally kill the mugger himself. (The "America Will Survive" remix has the businessman being a victim of the 9/11 attacks.)

Chart positions[edit]

Original version[edit]

Chart (1982) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks 2
Canadian RPM Country Tracks 2

2001 re-release as "America Will Survive"[edit]

Chart (2001) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks 45

2007 re-release for 25th Anniversary[edit]

Chart (2007) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks 45

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Sales/shipments
United States (RIAA)[2] Gold 500,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone
xunspecified figures based on certification alone

Chad Brock version (Y2K version)[edit]

"A Country Boy Can Survive (Y2K version)"
Single by Chad Brock, Hank Williams, Jr., and George Jones
from the album Yes!
B-side "Going the Distance"
Released November 22, 1999
Format CD single
Genre Country
Length 3:59
Label Warner Bros. Nashville
Producer(s) Buddy Cannon
Norro Wilson
Chad Brock chronology
"Lightning Does the Work"
(1999)
"A Country Boy Can Survive"
(Y2K version)
(1999)
"Yes!"
(2000)
Hank Williams, Jr. chronology
"I Ain't Goin' Peacefully"
(1995)
"A Country Boy Can Survive"
(Y2K version)
(1999)
"America Will Survive"
(2001)
George Jones chronology
"Choices"
(1999)
"A Country Boy Can Survive"
(Y2K version)
(1999)
"Sinners and Saints"
(2000)

In late 1999, Chad Brock and George Jones collaborated with Williams to record a re-written version of the song with a Y2K theme, with lines such as "If the bank machines crash, we'll be just fine." This version peaked at number 30 on the Billboard country charts, and number 75 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1999) Peak
position
Canada Country Tracks (RPM)[3] 66
US Billboard Hot 100[4] 75
US Hot Country Songs (Billboard)[5] 30

References[edit]

  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2008). Hot Country Songs 1944 to 2008. Record Research, Inc. ISBN 0-89820-177-2. 
  2. ^ "American single certifications – Hank Williams, Jr. – A Country Boy Can Survive". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved September 27, 2012.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  3. ^ "Top RPM Country Tracks: Issue 10016." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. January 10, 2000. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
  4. ^ "Chad Brock Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot 100 for Chad Brock.
  5. ^ "Chad Brock Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot Country Songs for Chad Brock.