NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — An artist's inspiration can come from anywhere. One local musician has some of that inspiration in something that played a key role in his childhood. His work has just landed him a major career highlight.
Flying more than 2,000 miles, music has taken Nashville singer, songwriter, producer, and arranger Armand Hutton to California for the weekend.
"I love connecting to the past," he said, speaking to NewsChannel 5 through Zoom.
The inspiration for this music may not be what you immediately expect.
There was a show that came on Friday nights at 7. It was about a family in Chicago and their brilliant, yet clumsy neighbor. The show was "Family Matters."
Hutton's album "Flip Intro" is an interpretation of TV theme songs, with a special focus on classic Black shows like "Family Matters."
"These are songs I grew up with," he said. "It takes me back to my childhood."
Legacy Barber Lounge, Hutton's barbershop, proves people have a lot of takes on their favorite of those old shows.
"Woo! Let me see here," said Rob Cheese, Hutton's barber. "Martin!"
"'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air' because it's about family," another barber chimed in as she worked.
"I grew up being a Will Smith fan," said Cheese's customer.
They also weighed in on their favorite characters.
"Carl Winslow!" smiled Cheese.
"The nostalgia those shows brought out. It involves kindness," said Hutton. "You wanna smile. You wanna laugh."
A few weeks ago brought Hutton a surprise. His recording of the "Family Matters" theme song got him a Grammy nomination for Best Arrangement, Instrumental or Acapella.
"I am in Los Angeles, California, for the Grammys for Grammy weekend," Hutton said.
Beyond the comedy and catchphrases, Hutton said these old shows are a positive representation. That's why they still mean so much to so many.
"How they always supported each other, that's kinda aspirational for a lot of African American families," said a customer at Legacy Barber Lounge.
"You don't necessarily see a Black dad and a Black mom loving each other on television often," said Hutton. "It's warm. It's a level of warmth that people aren't experiencing on a day-to-day basis. It's a beautiful thing to see. I wanted to highlight the Black family. I wanted to highlight some Black joy."