- Slang a cheap, disreputable, noisy cabaret or nightclub
- Slang a bar, esp. one where country music is played
Origin of honky-tonkfrom uncertain or unknown; perhaps
- Slang of or like a honky-tonk; specif., cheap, loud, low-class, etc.
- designating or of a style of piano music having a bouncy rhythm and a tinkling sound
Slang to make the rounds of honky-tonks
A cheap, noisy bar or dance hall.
- Of or relating to such a bar or dance hall; tawdry: a honky-tonk district; honky-tonk entertainers.
- Of, relating to, or being a type of ragtime characteristically played on a tinny-sounding piano or in a honky-tonk.
intransitive verbhon·ky-tonked, hon·ky-tonk·ing, hon·ky-tonks
To visit cheap, noisy bars or dance halls.
Origin of honky-tonkPerhaps from honk
- Alternative spelling of honky-tonk.
- (dated) A cheap nightclub
- Gimme, gimme, gimme a honky-tonk girl. The Rolling Stones, "Honky-tonk Woman".
- (dated) The type of music typically played in such a club
- A style of country music emphasizing traditional country instruments (e.g., guitar, steel guitar and fiddle); a rough, nasal vocal style; and tragic themes such as heartbreak, infidelity and alcoholism.
From honk-a-tonk (“a cheap nightclub”), possibly imitative