Ann Thompson, the widow of Country Music Hall of Famer Hank Thompson, has commissioned Deep In The Heart Foundry in Bastrop, Texas, to create a larger than life size bronze of the Country Music Icon. Upon its completion, the $40,000.00 bronze will be placed at the Heart of Texas Country Music Museum in Brady, Texas.
The idea for a life size bronze of the Country Music great began before Thompson passed away. He and his wife Ann had discussed the idea on several occasions and Thompson was even measured for the bronze. Those measurements began very valuable once the bronze was commissioned.
The bronze will depict Thompson performing on stage with his guitar while gently leaning back on a stool. He will be in full stage clothing with his hat, Tony Alamo "Hank" jacket, boots and guitar strap while singing into a microphone. The bronze will be about 10% larger than life and will be placed on a bronze floor created to look like the wood from an old stage. There will also be a short biography of Thompson on the bottom with his logo created into the bronze as well.
"We have some incredible artists that work with us at the foundry," Clint Howard, owner of Deep In The Heart Foundry, said. "When Mrs. Thompson approached me about creating a bronze honoring her late husband, I really wanted to create the image myself. I have spent literally hundreds of hours researching Hank and watching his videos and listening to his music. I believe that we have captured the essence of this Country Music legend and I am looking forward to the final steps in completing the project."
The bronze will be unveiled on Saturday, March 19, 2011, at the Heart of Texas Country Music Museum. Special political dignitaries will be in attendance along with many of those artists that Thompson influenced. There will be a ceremony and then a reception at the museum in conjunction with the 22nd Anniversary Celebration of the Heart of Texas Country Music Association.
Thompson was an entertainer whose career spanned seven decades. He sold more than 60 million records worldwide. Thompson’s musical style, characterized as honky tonk Western swing, was a mixture of fiddles, electric guitar and steel guitar that featured his distinctive, smooth baritone vocals.
His backing band, The Brazos Valley Boys, was voted the top Country Western Band for 14 years in a row by Billboard. Thompson was elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1989 and was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1997. He passed away on November 6, 2007.
"When Ann told me that she and Hank wanted to bronze at the Heart of Texas Country Music Museum, I can not tell you how honored we were," Heart of Texas Records President and Museum Coordinator Tracy Pitcox said. "Hank Thompson was truly one of the biggest Country Music entertainers in the history of our music. He left a huge legacy and we will be extremely proud to help carry on that legacy for future generations to know and honor Hank’s contributions to Country Music."
In conjunction with the unveiling, the museum will also open up an expanded Hank Thompson display including pieces from the Brazos Valley Boys.
Before his passing in 2007, Thompson asked that memorials be sent to the Heart of Texas Country Music Museum. Over $10,000.00 was received from fans and entertainers including Vince Gill, George Jones, Darrell McCall, Merle Haggard, Leona Williams, Amy Grant, Ferlin Husky, Frankie Miller, Johnny Moore and the Ernest Tubb Record Shop Corporation among others.