1953 in country music

This is a list of notable events in country music that took place in the year 1953.


  • January 1 — Hank Williams, due to play a New Year's Day show in Canton, Ohio, dies sometime after midnight in the rear seat of his Cadillac, somewhere between Knoxville, Tennessee and Oak Hill, West Virginia. He was 29. Stories conflict on what happened in the final hours of his life, but what is not disputed is that his death gave rise to the legend. In the 60-plus years following his death, Williams' songs would be covered countless times, singers and songwriters would directly cite him as an influence, and his son – Hank Williams, Jr., would become a star in his own right. The last song released in his lifetime was "I'll Never Get Out of This World Alive."

    Top hits of the year

    Number one hits

    United States

    (as certified by Billboard);Notes
  • 1^ No. 1 song of the year, as determined by Billboard.
  • 2^ Song dropped from No. 1 and later returned to top spot.
  • A^ First Billboard No. 1 hit for that artist.
  • B^ Only Billboard No. 1 hit for that artist.:''Note: Several songs were simultaneous No. 1 hits on the separate "Most Played in Juke Boxes," "Most Played by Jockeys" and "National Best Sellers" charts.

    Other major hits

    Top new album releases


  • April 9 — Hal Ketchum, popular country artist of the early 1990s.
  • June 1 — Ronnie Dunn, one half of Brooks & Dunn.
  • November 4 – Van Stephenson, singer-songwriter and member of the 1990s group BlackHawk (d. 2001)


  • January 1 — Hank Williams, 29, country music singing-songwriting giant and pioneer.

    Further reading

  • Kingsbury, Paul, "Vinyl Hayride: Country Music Album Covers 1947–1989," Country Music Foundation, 2003 ()
  • Millard, Bob, "Country Music: 70 Years of America's Favorite Music," HarperCollins, New York, 1993 ()
  • Whitburn, Joel. "Top Country Songs 1944–2005 – 6th Edition." 2005.Country Category:Country music by year