I recently had the pleasure of talking with Vickie Jurkowski with the Chicago Tribunes Daily Southtown.
Here’s a sample of what we talked about:
It’s no surprise when musicians cover Johnny Cash or Bruce Springsteen. But when Ernie Hendrickson starts singing, there’s an unexpected maturity to his voice.
Not yet 40, the singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist from Palos Park is an old soul with a preference for Hank Williams, Bill Monroe and Jerry Garcia over any of today’s indie rock artists. And his modesty belies his albums featuring folks who’ve performed with Willie Nelson, Neil Young, Brad Paisley, Vince Gill
and Stevie Ray Vaughan.
Formative Years: “My brother and I had a band when we were kids. Around age 11 or 12, I had a half-size acoustic guitar with only two strings and I’d write songs with it. We made up our own stuff and performed around the house for our parents and aunts and uncles. I was bummed out to put all six strings on it when I
started guitar lessons on my 13th birthday.”
In seventh grade he played baritone horn and was offered extra class time for music if he wanted to try the drums.
“I thought ‘yah, ’cause you never saw a baritone horn on MTV.'”
He continued to play drums in high school jazz band along with guitar.
In high school, Hendrickson and his brother Neil, a guitarist and lead singer, formed the Seed Band, which was popular in the Rockford area for a decade.
“In high school, music had really taken a hold on me. I was really nurtured by that environment. At age 17 I just knew I wanted to do music.”
He earned a degree in classical guitar at Illinois State University and then flirted with teaching music in public schools as a long-term substitute, but didn’t care for disciplining students.
Check out the entire article.