Ridgely natives Brandon and Jon Hutcheson are keeping their family’s musical legacy alive as the Hutcheson Brothers.
The brothers’ unique storytelling ability gives their take on modern country music an air of nostalgia. Their self-titled debut EP dropped this summer and has already earned the brothers nods in the music industry.
Lake County Roots
Brandon, 30, who currently lives in Dyer County, and Jon, 21, who lives in Ridgely, trace their musical roots to their family. Their mom, Lorie, is a charting country gospel artist. Currently, she works with the Lake County Board of Education. Their uncle, James “Buck” Hutcheson, who passed away earlier this year, played guitar with the likes of Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, and the Memphis Beats, which played for Jerry Lee Lewis.
The duo got their start in music in Lake County, putting on their first shows in their home county. Brandon performed at the 2006 Lake County Relay for Life. By 2012 the brothers were beginning to play music together, performing at the Strand Theatre in Tiptonville for a fundraiser.
Drawn to music at a young age, Jon picked up guitar skills at nine years old. Although he says his family was a big influence for him, there was another influence that led him to music.
“Keith Urban really started it for me,” he laughed during a phone interview.
For Brandon, music was always a hobby. He began songwriting in high school and then found a passion for drums around seven years ago. Garth Brooks was a big musical influence for him.
Making the EP
By 2012, Jon and Brandon were collaborating and even played in a few bands together. It wasn’t until last year that they decided to form Hutcheson Brothers. Things progressed quickly for the duo. Already seasoned musicians, having played solo and with other bands, Brandon and Jon were ready to make their move.
Only a year after forming the duo, the brothers set out to find the perfect recording studio to record their EP.
After meeting with multiple studios and producers, the brothers settled on Beaird Music Group, Inc. in Nashville.
“We wanted [a studio] we could really have a partnership with. It kind of felt like a coming home experience,” Brandon said of choosing Beaird.
Some of country music’s most successful songwriters have recorded their demos at Beaird Music Group. Demos for hit songs performed by the likes of Blake Shelton, Lady Antebellum, Luke Bryan, and more were recorded at Beaird.
Recording for the EP, which features three songs, began in April.
“There are certain goals I’ve had as an artist. One of them was always to record in Nashville,” Brandon said.
The brothers wrote one of the songs, “Mississippi River Town,” as an ode to their home county.
“There’s a lot of home folks who have shared it and requested it,” Jon said. “We’re proud of where we come from.”
Hitting the Road
Pursuing their music career has presented the brothers with some surreal opportunities, like hearing themselves on the radio.
Their songs “Drive” and “Mississippi River Town” have been requested on country radio stations.
“Drive” has even gotten some radio play across the pond. Simply Country with Bob Angel, a show broadcasted in the United Kingdom, recently played the single.
“The very first time you hear yourself on the radio, it’s like, I can’t believe it,” Brandon said.
The positive responses from hometown fans and new fans alike have been overwhelming.
“The point from recording [the EP] to hearing the positive responses… it’s unbelievable,” said Jon.
In addition to the radio play, the brothers have been learning firsthand how exciting live and televised shows are.
The duo has played for local stations like EPlus TV’s Six in the City out of Jackson.
“It’s always fun to go out and see a crowd,” Jon said, “but with a camera on you, that’s probably my favorite.”
They’ve also played at impressive events like the St. Jude Rock n Roll Marathon during the NFL draft in Nashville. They’ve also played on the Kansas City Chiefs stage, though Brandon says his loyalties will always lie with the Cowboys.
The brothers agree that the cherry on top of these experiences is doing it together.
“My brother, he’s one of my best friends,” Jon said. “It’s great to do this with family.”
The Bluebird Café
For many artists, playing at The Bluebird Café in Nashville is a dream come true. Jon and Brandon achieved that dream on November 25.
Superstars like Taylor Swift and Garth Brooks were discovered at The Bluebird. Some of country’s biggest hits, like “The Dance” and “Strawberry Wine,” made their debut at the legendary venue.
“It was a dream come true,” Brandon said in a press release. “There are two venues that I have always dreamed of playing, The Grand Ole Opry house and The Bluebird. Thanks to the good Lord, we were able to cross one off the list.”
The Hutcheson Brothers were one of six acts to perform a second song that night. They performed “Chillin’” and “Mississippi River Town” from their EP.
“It was great getting to perform a song at the Bluebird, but getting the chance to play two to a packed house? That was amazing,” Jon said in a press release.
“It was just cool to step foot where artists like Taylor Swift, Garth Brooks, Rascal Flatts, and tons of other superstars have played and got their start. We still have a long way to go to get to where we want to be, and we never take anything for granted. We just appreciate any and every opportunity to play our music anywhere,” he added.
Videos of the performance are available on the Hutcheson Brothers Music Facebook page.
It seems that finding their passion early is beginning to pay off for the brothers—impressive nominations have already started rolling in for the duo.
Their work on their EP earned them nominations for Modern Country Duo Entertainer of the Year, Modern Country Duo of the Year, Songwriters Achievement Award for “Mississippi River Town” and Male Songwriter of the Year (Brandon Hutcheson) at the 2019 Josie Music Awards. Nominations for the 2019 Tennessee Music Awards include Song of the Year (“Drive) and Songwriter of the Year (Brandon Hutcheson). Before becoming a duo, the brothers each earned nominations at the 2017 Tennessee Music Awards. Brandon won Drummer of the Year in 2017.
“Awards and nominations aren’t why we do what we do,” Brandon said. “But to get those, I’m kind of speechless. Hopefully, it means our music has touched somebody in a positive way.”
“It all started in Tiptonville and now it’s escalated to playing all over the state,” Jon said of their music.
Both brothers expressed appreciation for Lake County, especially to their hometown supporters. At each live performance, they proudly announce that they are from Lake County.
“We hope that whatever we do will make the folks in Lake County proud,” Brandon said.
The Hutcheson Brothers debut EP is available on Apple Music, Amazon Music, Google Play, Spotify, CD Baby, and hutchesonbros.wixsite.com/hbstore. The duo announces their upcoming shows and news on their Facebook page and Instagram, Hutcheson Brothers Music.