Brothers Paul and Sam Hatch share more than a few strands of DNA. Both love music—however distinctive and different in style or approach they may be. It creates a fusion of unique sound and “flavor” for their own outfit, The Hatch Brothers.
“Paul has always favored bass styles, reminiscent of the bassist from Iron Maiden or Victor Wooten,” Sam details, “where[as] my music education allowed me to explore/adopt tonalities from impressionism jazz, folk and rock.”
Paul (bass, vocals, ukulele) and Sam (lead vocals, acoustic guitar, piano) have performed as a duo since 2010, and developed their sound with various forms of Americana and covers of their most influential favorites—from The Avett Brothers to Foster the People. While The Hatch Brothers are finishing a series of new original songs, they also have spent time merging with other local ILM artists for a new project.
“We have been performing with our talented drummer, John Hamilton, and singer/songwriter, Jenny Pearson,” Paul tells. “We are very happy to be working with [Jenny]. . . . Together we created a new group called ‘Jenny and The Hatch Brothers.’”
Folks can catch the new group at the Sea Witch in Carolina Beach on January 13. Meanwhile, The Hatch Brothers continue to entertain Wilmingtonians as a duo, too. Their next show, at Goodfellas in downtown Wilmington, is scheduled for December 30.
encore caught up with Paul and Sam Hatch to chat about their music and forthcoming projects in 2018.
encore (e): Tell us more about your dynamic on and off stage. What are some distinctive differences between you two?
Paul Hatch (PH): One of the best things about working together is we both are very active onstage. Whenever people come to hear us play, they comment on our energy and how we manage to create a set list that appeals to a younger audience, as well as an older group. We both know what each other can do, and it makes it easier for us to learn and create something we love.
Sam Hatch (SH): Onstage we are energetic and always feeling the energy of the music and room. We feed off the crowd’s energy, but we always make sure to bring it from the start. Offstage we are best friends—and always have been.
e: How do you balance life outside The Hatch Brothers (like going to school or respective jobs) with the progression of the music?
PH: For me, it’s easy. We mostly have shows during the weekend, so it’s convenient with my work schedule.
SH: While this past semester has been crazy, with my composition recital and other concerts at Campbell University, the next semester will be a much lighter load. I will graduate in May, so it will be easier to balance everything at that point. But it has been manageable, with gigs being on weekends.
e: Are you both songwriters or is it a shared effort?
PH: We both take on various roles when it comes to songwriting. Very often it comes from playing together for hours and building upon a tune. [I focus] on melodies and bass lines mostly, while Sam writes lyrics, chord structures, and potential harmonies. Sam is a music composition major at Campbell University, so he has written several pieces by himself, including piano works, choral works and large instrumental ensemble works. He is also currently working on a side project, filled with songs that are a blend of ragtime, gospel, jazz, and folk.
e: What can you tell us about your forthcoming album? When do you hope to have it ready for release?
PH: We have been experimenting with many different sounds/genres, [and] blending musical styles and instrumentation. Our sounds can be reminiscent of, or a blend of, rock, blues, jazz, and folk. We are hoping to release our album by the beginning of next summer.
e: Already have a studio in mind? Are you working with anyone to get the project off the ground?
PH: Not yet, but we have been working with other musicians to help make this dream a reality.
e: How are your personalities and talents reflected in the music?
PH: I feel our energy and musical knowledge is conveyed—from quick transitions to beautiful sections that convey depth and meaning to the songs we perform. We try to cover and create music that appeals to us.
SH: We’re very energetic and have a grand appreciation for all [sounds], including a love to dabble on many instruments. I feel we bring our musical knowledge and eclectic styles into our songs, and while my formal training for voice and theory brings a cleaner sound into the mix, we love to improvise and bring a bit of modernistic, jazz-like insanity into our performances.
e: Are you playing any new tunes live?
PH: We are currently playing a few original songs at our shows. Locals and tourists can hear our original music, as well as the artists who inspired us to become musicians. We perform covers from our favorite artists—Beatles, Tom Petty, to ‘90s rockers, The Avett Brothers, Fleet Foxes, Alabama Shakes, Foster the People, and others.
e: Tell us more about a couple of songs, such as what they’re about and the instrumentals we hear in them.
PH: The songs we’ve written have been inspired from events in our lives, such as breakups, new relationships, and the passing of family members and friends. Our lyrics tend to focus on relatable concepts, with an emphasis on having a poetic nature. We have worked to make them unique but relatable. Our instrumentation varies, but the songs can include dual acoustic guitars, piano, bass, drums, and a wide variety of eclectic folk instruments.
One of our songs, “Where You Are,” focuses on a new relationship with a dancer, and the singer’s desire to be with her. The verses shift the “where” every time: the first being the desire to be in a relationship, the second being with her on her dance tour around the world, and the final being with her for the rest of their days.
The Hatch Brothers
Sat., Dec. 30, 10:30 p.m.
Goodfellas • 122 Princess St.
Jenny and the Hatch Brothers
Sat., Jan. 13, 8 p.m.
SeaWitch Cafe & Tiki Bar
227 Carolina Beach Ave. N.