Little Hatch (October 25, 1921 – January 16, 2003)
was a blues singer, musician and harmonica player. Biography
Born Provine Hatch, Jr. in Sledge, Mississippi, he learned to play
harmonica from his father. Hearing blues and gospel music, Hatch knew he
wanted to make music for a living. At age 14, his family moved to
Helena, Arkansas and the blues scene caught his attention.
Hatch joined the Navy in 1943; after his tour of duty, he relocated to
Kansas City, Missouri in 1946. After working for a cartage company for
two years, he founded his own cartage business and married.
In the early 1950s, Hatch began jamming in blues clubs of Kansas City.
He closed his business in 1954 and took a job with Hallmark Cards. In
1955, he formed and fronted his own band, playing on the weekends and a
few nights a week. This act would continue for more than 20 years. By
the late 1950s, Hatch's harmonica style became influenced by
Chicago blues players
such as Little Walter,
Snooky Pryor and
In 1971 German exchange university students recorded a Little Hatch
performance. This became an album, entitled The Little Hatchet Band, but
distribution was limited to Germany and Belgium. He retired from
Hallmark in 1986 and his band, "Little Hatch and the House Rockers",
were hired as the house band of the Grand Emporium Saloon in Kansas
City. A cassette of his blues performances at the Grand Emporium was
released in 1988.
In 1992, the Modern Blues label released Well, All Right and became his
first nationally-distributed album. In 1997, Chad Kassem opened Blue
Heaven Studios and founded the APO label. Kassem had befriended Little
Hatch in the mid 1980s and asked him to be his first signed recording
artist. In 1998, the album Goin' Back was released and was followed by
Rock with Me Baby in 2000.
From 1999 to 2001, Hatch occasionally toured other parts of the United
States, and twice toured Europe. He settled back down as a Kansas City
performer, frequently playing at BB's Lawnside Bar-B-Q and other venues.
In the summer of 2002 Hatch was diagnosed with cancer. He died in