If you pass by The Ice House on a Saturday night for a cold minnow, or perhaps another favorite local watering hole, you’ve heard Jackson Hatch.
Jackson is the son of longtime bassist/vocalist Lee Hatch. The two Hatch boys and singer-guitarist Evan Christian performed together. But Jackson Hatch seems to be breaking into his.
He performed on Friday at Potosi Live, then was at the Ice House on Saturday — mom and dad in the room — to perform songs from his debut recording, “Bring It On Home.”
It features seven songs – six originals and an Albert Cummings-style version of the Merle Haggard classic, “Working Man Blues”.
“Or,” Hatch said, “if you’re from here, the Dave Hobbs version.”
In other words, extra spice.
A 2018 graduate of Abilene High who said English was “easier” than other classes, Hatch picked up the pace of his music after his senior year.
Hatch had released three singles previously but knew an album would be next. These three songs are on this project.
The song that started this journey is “Please Don’t Ask Me”, a song written in his dorm at Abilene Christian University.
When asked if there was a theme, Hatch replied that there was none planned. Instead, his songs are a collection of stories. Songs about people and circumstances.
Not exactly. Living in the dorm, he listened to high school friends go to ACU and new acquaintances talk about their lives.
“I took little pieces” of their lives and put them into lyrics, he said.
He said his favorite song may be “Backwood Lullaby”. It evolved during his college days, when a girl from San Antonio blended into the boy band. Hatch said he enjoyed the way they interacted with her and the way she interacted with them.
Little did they know they were putting together a story song.
Hatch said the words usually come first, then the music. But sometimes a catchy chord progression will be first, and he writes about it.
One advantage he has over other newbies is growing with the music. He’s done enough scenes, multiple times with his dad, to know what people like – sometimes a laid-back song, other times a high-energy song.
For now, he’ll stick to his day job as an estimator and parts guy at the Sheppard Collision Center. He had more gigs, mostly east of Abilene in Fort Worth.
His music has received “very positive feedback”, he said. Everywhere Hatch has played, he’s been asked to come back. It’s always a good sign.
“He loves it,” Hatch said of his father’s criticism of his son’s music. “He influenced me so much.”
Both in the style of his songs and in the lyrics.
As this project took more than a year to prepare, Lee Hatch knows the songs well and performed them live with Jackson.
You can find “Bring It On Home” on all major streaming sites – Apple Music, Spotify, Pandora, Amazon and YouTube.
Hatch will be in town, that’s for sure. If you want to take a road trip, it opens Saturday for Jon Stork in Waxahachie. Stork opened for Aaron Watson at a concert at the Abilene Zoo in June 2021.
Greg Jaklewicz is editor of the Abilene Reporter-News and general columnist. If you enjoy local news, you can support local reporters with a digital subscription to ReporterNews.com.