A 'Small Town Saturday Night' Best Bet In Fredericksburg

Jun 26, 2014

Fredericksburg’s Pioneer Museum hosts another concert on Saturday night. It's Hal Ketchum, and you've  probably heard his biggest hit, "Small Town Saturday Night." That one song propelled Ketchum to instant stardom, but he got a late start on the whole showbiz thing.

“I was a 38-year-old cabinetmaker," he said. "To have a number one country record--I don’t think it had been done on that level before.”

The singer-songwriter has been plying his trade quite successfully, with 15 top ten hits since then. As he explained, he somehow finds time to work with wood, too.

“I’ve restored a grist mill built in 1888," Ketchum said. "That’s my home. I just finished a four-poster native cedar bed. I built the coffee tables, I built the countertops."

Ketchum has found a place seemingly halfway between the glittery world of entertainment and the handmade world of wood.

"The music business is kind of like smoke 'n' mirrors," said Ketchum. "It’s all speculation. But when you build a porch, you can step back at the end of the day and say: Yeah, that’s there. It’s going to be there a long time."

He’s also built a strong following of fans who will be in Fredericksburg to watch him and his three-piece band a the Pioneer Museum.

"I’m doing it with my buddy Kenny Grimes -- he’s going to play guitar -- and this kid Tim Forsberg, who plays percussion with me,” Ketchum said.

I noted with surprise that he was from upstate New York.

“Yeah, absolutely. I’m from a town just outside of Saratoga," he said. "I’m a Yankee by birth and a Texan by choice, as I like to say.”

All things considered, Hal Ketchum seems a great way to spend time on a small town Saturday night.