Photography By Andy Evinger
Twenty-one-year-old Waylon Hanel is a self-taught musician and singer characterized by his textured vocals and endearing ability to captivate audiences. The Michigan native has quickly become recognized for his down-to-earth style, bold delivery, and vivid storytelling.
Named after country music legend Waylon Jennings (one of his biggest musical influences), Hanel has worked to hone his skills in developing a vintage signature style of his own. His music and recordings are a testament to his unique, artistic individuality and powerful delivery well beyond his years.
“In my humble opinion, country music today has lost its way. I want to keep traditional country music alive with ‘three chords and the truth’ and an old-school vibe.”
In the five short years since Waylon launched his music career, he has performed as a support act opening for Uncle Kracker, Travis Tritt, Trace Adkins, Chris Cagle, Elvie Shane, Ashley McBryde, Tyler Farr, and Jo Dee Messina among others. Waylon’s 2023 tour schedule is fast approaching more than 75 show dates. He made his official introduction with his self-titled EP (WAYLON HANEL/Nov. 2022), featuring five original tunes, and followed with his sophomore CD, NEW OLD OUTLAWS in May 2023. (“New Old Outlaws Rewind” the spotlighted bonus track, charted at No. 54 on the MusicRow Breakout Chart). Waylon released his second single, “He Don’t Mind” to country radio in June 2023.
“My cowboy hat and boots aren’t just for show, they’re lived-in.”