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Published on Nov 27, 2007
LOST HIGHWAY by Hank Williams. Written by Leon Payne
"Lost Highway", often assumed to have come from Hank's pen, was written by Leon Payne... Payne was a blind musician who worked out of Jerry Irby's nightclub in Houston and guested on the Hayride and the Opry. His original version... had been released on the Nashville-based Bullet label in October 1948.
Colin Escott, Hank Williams - The Biography, Boston, 1995, p. 98.
MYRTIE (Mrs. Leon) PAYNE: In the early days of Leon's career, he hitchhiked from one place to another, finding jobs wherever he could. Once he was in Califonia hitchhiking to Alba, Texas, to visit his sick mother. He was unable to get a ride and finally got help from the Salvation Army. It was while he was waiting for help that he wrote this song.
Telephone interview, Dec 20, 1972; reprinted in Dorothy Horstman, Sing Your Heart Out, Country Boy, New York, 1976, p. 368.