Eric Church joins Hank Williams Jr. and band for a roof-raising take on the 1972 Neil Young tune “Are You Ready for the Country,” with a video that spotlights their performance rather than any accompanying storyline. The clip takes place on a set that resembles an old barn, which is a fitting tribute to the original, since the track from Young’s Harvest album, where the song was first heard, was recorded in a barn on his California ranch.
But it’s the 1976 Top Ten country hit for Waylon Jennings that resonates with Williams, who once toured with the outlaw legend. “That’s the part that means anything to me, that it’s a Waylon song,” Williams tells Rolling Stone Country. “Waylon was opening the show with ‘Are You Ready for the Country’ and then he and I closed the show with ‘Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way.’ Yeah, so you think I don’t have special memories?”
“Are You Ready for the Country” is the lead single from Williams’ latest LP It’s About Time, due January 15th. In addition to Church, the new album features appearances by Brantley Gilbert, Justin Moore and Brad Paisley.