Nate Hancock and The Declaration
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Nate Hancock and The Declaration

Fayetteville, Arkansas, United States | SELF

Fayetteville, Arkansas, United States | SELF
Band Pop Singer/Songwriter


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Declaration: [dek-luh-rey-shuhn] n. – something that is announced, avowed, or proclaimed. Nate Hancock is a firm believer in Fate. Driven by the desire to create music for the people, he turned what might seem like a chance meeting with five-time Grammy Winner Joey Williams (Blind Boys of Alabama, Robert Randolph & the Family Band) into a platform to take his music to the next level.

Hancock met Williams when Robert Randolph played it Fayetteville. The meeting with Williams proved to be quite fateful. With the award-winning guitarist’s encouragement, Hancock realized that he could go beyond the bar scene and do something national. All it would take was a little help and a little chutzpah.

But first, he needed to record an album. The former Eoff Brothers bassist recently released his new album “We the People” serves as a mission statement, a declaration if you will, of his philosophies, values, and recipes for a good time. “I was really inspired by the medical marijuana movement when writing this record,” said Hancock.

“The people behind it really grew it as a grassroots movement. I wrote this album for the people who truly benefit from that.”

Featuring infectious tracks like “Chicken Wang,” and “We the People” featuring Grammy-winner Williams and local emcee Colin Hardaway, the record is filled with catchy melodies, raw guitar licks, and smooth vocals. Aside from Williams, he recruited local musicians like blues phenomenon Kory Montgomery, Jeremy Irvin, Tyler Wright, Brad Haj, Heather Allen, and Nikki Hill.

A folk, funk, blues, jam record that still remains steeped in the tenants of pop music, “We the People” has been in the works for nearly four years. Many of the songs fans may recognize from Hancock’s acoustic sets he played at bars around Dickson Street before moving to southern California in May. A true independent album, the music, art, and photos are all 100 percent from the mind of Hancock himself. He said, “I was very fortunate to have the help of God, and some very close, talented friends to materialize the idea.”

He refers to the album as a “test,” but one that has strengthened his talent and resolve to succeed as a musician. “A lot of things happen over the course of a few years that involve a lot more than just music and some of them can be obstacles that stand in the way of your goals,” said Hancock. “I poured my life into this project. I developed a stronger relationship with God, family, and friends during the process. Inevitably, the process of making this album was really the process of finding out whom I really was as a person. [B]y the time I had finished the album, I had fulfilled my own declaration as an artist.”

While the process was lengthy, Hancock felt things became easier once he got started. He said, “I feel the songs pretty much wrote themselves. I wanted there to be one thing that tied all the songs together. The lyrical message has a lot to do with our everyday lives. I didn’t want anybody to listen to this and ask, ‘What is he talking about?’ Instead, most people say to me, ‘I totally relate to that song, or that’s how I feel about things too.’ All in all, I guess this process really identifies with me maturing into an independent young man and artist.”

Though he envisions working on other projects, Hancock sees performing under the Declaration moniker as a lifelong commitment, especially since he took the plunge, quit his day job, and hit the road.

“I would have to say that now more than ever I feel like a real musician,” Hancock said. “In other words, my life depends on it. If I don’t play, I don’t eat, or pay rent. I live solely off the music I create. I think you have to put yourself in a position of survival to really see what you are made of.”

When he first moved to California he played for tips in the streets. He realized the better he played, the more he ate. “And I’ve slimmed down a little since then, if you know what I mean,” he joked.

His street gigs paid off and he has a regular club schedule in California. He also feels that his voice and guitar chops have improved. Now, thanks to the help of Williams and the rest of the Blind Boys backing band, Hancock is touring the country playing everywhere from Santa Monica to Denver to Baltimore. He’s developing into a mature, polished artist, albeit one who is still willing to play for anyone who’s willing to listen.

“It’s kind of humbling being on stage with Grammy-winners in NYC, then flying across country to play on the streets the very next day. I will always play for the unsuspecting passersby. But most of all, I play for me because I love the music so much.”

The future is wide open for Hancock these days. He’s currently planning his next album with the Blind Boys’ band and will record it in Brooklyn, NY, at the home studio of Peter Levin, who plays keyboards for the Blind Boys.

Nate Hancock & The Declaration will hold a CD release party for “We the People” on Sept. 23, 2010 at Sticky Fingerz in Little Rock. He will play at Chelsea’s in Eureka Springs on Sept. 25 before playing a free homecoming show at the Citizen Cope afterparty at George’s Majestic Lounge in Fayetteville on Sept. 29. For more information, check him out on Facebook and Myspace.

—Kody Ford, Nightflying: The Entertainment Guide - Nightflying Magazine

Nate Hancock and The Declaration to perform at 2010 NAMA. Google "2010 NAMA AWARDS for more info". - Performance


"We the People" LP
Circuit_Entertainment 2010



NATE HANCOCK & THE DECLARATION is a group fronted by singer/songwriter Nate Hancock combined with powerful r&b/funk instrumentation provided by band members of The Kory Montgomery Band and The Blind Boys of Alabama. Joey Williams, a featured guitar player on the debut album "We the People", 5-time Grammy winner and Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award winner sets the tone for the project with his legendary, funk guitar riffs similar to his work done on tour and in studio with Robert Randolph and The Family Band and The Blind Boys of Alabama. With world renowned musicians backing him.. Nate Hancock, who's influences include artists from genres such as pop, rock, blues, soul, R&B, gospel, hip hop, and jam, the band creates a melting pot of hypnotizing grooves with catchy hooks and feet moving rhythms behind mesmerizing lyrics and vocals. The debut album "We the People " sends a message of realism that boldly confronts the views and times of modern American culture and music. Nate Hancock tours and performs as a solo acoustic act in more intimate venues and as a full band with The Declaration at clubs/festivals to promote the debut album "We the People" which features the title track "We the People". Other hit singles include "Chicken Wang", "Reflection", "Take it all the Way", "The Slow Down" and "Phenomenal". The band is currently embarking on a massive CD release tour and plan to feed the new sound to hungry ears all over the globe.

10% of ALL proceeds from "We the People" are donated to The Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation in search of a cure and better treatment.