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Culture / Entertainment

10-Year-Old Musician is Becoming a Texas Force

Song About His Mom Fighting Cancer Helps Others

BY // 11.13.17

Jack Barksdale is an up-and-coming musician from Dallas. He’s recently shared the stage with Ray Wylie Hubbard and Courtney Patton. He just released a music video for his latest single titled “My Mother,” which deals with the uncertain experience of having a loved one fight cancer.

And he is 10 years old.

“I started playing guitar about three years ago but I’ve only been playing out – playing gigs – since last November,” he says.

He started writing music shortly after learning to play. Influenced by musical icons like Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard, Barksdale’s music has a soulful and folksy sound.

“I just thought of some lyrics and that turned into a song and then I thought this is cool so I started writing more and I really liked it,” he says.

The young musician has a can-do attitude that is rare for any artist, let alone someone of so few years. For many musicians, dealing with stage fright is a lifelong battle, for Barksdale, it’s simply not a problem.

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“But, the one time I did get nervous was [performing] with Verlon Thompson.” he tells PaperCity.

“He’s been remarkably cool about it,” his mom adds.

Speaking of remarkably cool, Jack Barksdale is already using his talents to do good for others. His latest single and music video, “My Mother,” shares his experience while his mom was fighting cancer (she is now cancer free). He’s selling posters for the song to raise money for other families affected by cancer and to spread awareness. You can check out the touching tribute and vintage-inspired posters here.

This 10-year-old has accomplished a lot in his one-year music career, but he still has plenty of goals.

“I write them down on Post-It notes and put them on my mirror. Someone told me that Cleto Cordero, a Texas singer-songwriter, does that, so I thought that was a good idea,” he says.

Barksdale hopes to one day perform alongside Willie Nelson, write a song in the Colorado mountains, and, oddly enough, write a song in a graveyard (a statement which his parents seem both amused and unsettled by).

What advice would he give other young folks going into music?

“Don’t be afraid to get into your music and don’t be scared of playing out,” he says. “It’s just like playing your songs in your bedroom. And don’t be afraid to have fun.”

Home, chic home.

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