Country music veteran Hal Ketchum has passed away at age 67. Ketchum has died due to complications from Dementia. He passed away Monday evening, November 23rd according to his wife Andrea.
Originally from Greenwich, New York where he was born on April 9th, 1953, Hal Ketchum moved first to Austin in 1981 where he began playing small clubs and recorded his first album for the small label Watermelon Records. He later moved to Nashville to pursue a country career further, and became a successful performer throughout the early 90's, starting his career off with one of his signature songs, "Small Town, Saturday Night" in 1991.
Ketchum's debut album on Curb Records Past The Point of Rescue was certified Gold, and along with his second record, 1992's Sure Love, Ketchum charted three #2 singles, and seven Top 10's, including beloved hits like "Past The Point of Rescue" and "Mama Knows the Highway." Hal's music was a little more songwriter-based at the time, making him less Garth Brooks, and more Steve Earle. He had another hit with "Stay Forever" off of his 1994 record Every Little Word. It was also in 1994 when Hal Ketchum became a member of the Grand Ole Opry.
Between 1991 and 2006 Ketchum had seventeen entries on the Billboard Hot Country Songs. Ketchum was not only a genuine entertainer and talented lyricist but a friend to many in the music and entertainment industry.
Fellow artists mourn the loss of their friend and share fond memories that have left them forever inspired by the timeless, Hal Ketchum.
"The Oak Ridge Boys are saddened over the loss of Hal Ketchum ... a great voice and a great guy ... 2020 has been hard ... so many country music artists and songwriters have gone home this year ... Rest easy Hal." - The Oak Ridge Boys
"There is now another addition to the amazing band in heaven. I really hate to hear this. Hal was such a talented and wonderful guy." - Johnny Lee
"Such a deep loss for our music community and for the world. Thank you, God, for giving us the gift of wonderful, talented Hal Ketchum. My heart and prayers are with the family, friends, and all who were touched by his music and songs. He will surely be loved, missed, and remembered Forever. Rest In Peace, Hal." - Deborah Allen
"My heart is breaking for the family of Hal Ketchum. I always enjoyed playing the Grand Ole Opry with Hal. He stepped on that stage with a smile on his face, and the music he sang was pure poetry. He will be missed." - Tim Atwood
"My thoughts and prayers are with his family. He made a lot of great music throughout his career." - B.J. Thomas
"Hal was one of the nicest guys I've ever known. We always had a special bond. I'm saddened to hear of his passing but gladdened to know his physical pain is over. Sheila and my prayers are with his family today. R.I.P. my brother." - T. Graham Brown
"Thoughts and prayers out to the family of Hal Ketchum. One of my favorite voices of the Opry. I'm glad to know that he is no longer suffering and in a much better place. Our hearts are still gonna roll, Hal. We love you and will miss you but your songs will always remain." - JD Shelburne