For the Avett Brothers, Tom T. Hall Was a ‘Hero’


One of the greatest country singer-songwriters of all time, Tom T. Hall, passed away this past Friday at age 85. Tributes have been flowing from fans but also numerous artists, including Jason Isbell, Joe Henry, Josh Hedley, Hiss Golden Messenger, and the Avett Brothers

Tom T. was nicknamed “the Storyteller,” and if you listen to any of his many compositions over the past several decades it’s easy to see why. Songs such as “The Year That Clayton Delaney Died,” “Ballad of 40 Dollars,” “Pay No Attention to Alice,” “Mama Bake a Pie,” “Homecoming,” “Harper Valley PTA,” and “Old Dogs, Children and Watermelon Wine” are like short stories – simple in structure and sung with a straightforward style, but they stick with you for a lifetime. 



The Avett Brothers were not just fans of Tom they called him their “hero,” and they’ve performed covers of his songs on numerous occasions. The video at the top of the page is from a concert in North Carolina this past weekend (Aug. 21) where they sang two of his songs, “I Love” (a Number One hit that Bob Dylan famously called “a little overcooked”), and “That’s How I Got to Memphis.”

The latter song they had previously performed at a concert inspired by the Coen Brothers film Inside Llewyn Davis.



Seth Avett also paid tribute to Tom on his Instagram, including sharing a cover of Tom’s song “Pamela Brown.”


And finally, here’s a version Seth recorded in 2011 of Tom’s song “I Flew Over Our House Last Night.”


“Rest in peace Tom T. Hall,” Seth Avett wrote on Instagram. “I am your student forever.”