Ernie Hendrickson has journeyed a long way from his days as a fledgling musician in his native Rockford, IL to the mature singer songwriter you hear today. Cutting his teeth on Chicago's aggressive music scene in The Seed Band and The Make Believe to branching out as a solo artist, Hendrickson has traveled down the road and back again.
With a natural and fluent style, Ernie Hendrickson crafts beautiful gems straight from the heart of Middle America. His latest release, Down The Road, is a genuine blend of down home songwriting and campfire storytelling. While the new album is a departure from previous work, Hendrickson's venture into the realm of acoustic blues, bluegrass, folk, and pop is a seamless transition. Approaching a less is sometimes more mentality his songwriting style shines brightly. Drawing early inspiration from contemporary singer-songwriters such as Bob Dylan, Neil Young, and Tom Petty, along with experimental songwriters in the vein of Tom Waits, Ernie Hendrickson is able to harness their influence for his own usage. In later years, artists such as the Grateful Dead, Bela Fleck and various types of jazz, bluegrass and folk would figure prominently into Hendrickson's styling.
"This project feels like my first 'real' record," Hendrickson says. "The songs on this record were difficult to let go of, because the material is so personal and so special to me, and some of it I've carried with me a long time but it really feels right now." Songs such as "Down the Road" and "Seasons Change" paint vivid pictures with exceptional storytelling. "Lay Your Troubles Down" contains an unforgettable melody over an articulately picked guitar pattern. Crystal clear acoustic guitar arrangements and shimmering pedal steel lines contribute to the down home feel of Hendrickson's latest effort.
Featuring Howard Levy of Bela Fleck and the Flecktones, Brian Wilke mastering the pedal steel, Darren Garvey handling percussion, and Matt Ulery and Chris Clemente sharing bass duties, the album boasts a handful of prominent names in the music biz.
With Down The Road, Ernie Hendrickson has found his place amongst the finest singer-songwriters. He is fully committed to the path of the musician, wherever it may lead, in effort to recreate the passion and vision bestowed on him by the great artists and individuals that have come before.