Jade Marie Patek: Family Traditions, Writing the "Texas Experience", and Supporting Female Artists
Click here to view the full album of Jade Marie Patek performing at the Levitt Pavilion in Arlington this past summer.
On a warm summer night in Arlington, we were able to finally watch a live performance of Jade Marie Patek. The rising Texas musician opened for Rich O’Toole at the Levitt Pavilion in downtown Arlington. We were lucky enough to catch an interview with her after her fantastic performance.
In this interview with Texas Country Tour, Jade Marie Patek shares her thoughts on her familial music background, balancing multiple careers, and working a crowd of two hundred or two. Answers have been edited for clarity and brevity.
TCT: Can you tell us about yourself?
JMP: I sure can. I was born and raised in the Halletsville/Shiner, Texas area and went to college at Texas State. That's kind of how I got into the whole Texas music scene. I've been playing music forever but as far as like really meeting artists and submerging myself in the culture, that's kind of where all that started.
I started to become serious about writing songs around then and played a lot of gigs in the general Rockport area. I just got more experience and am a lot better at it. I started the whole radio scene around 2016. I'm so glad I did because it really just brought everything to another level. More venues and towns opened up to me. I never looked back since and it's been amazing.
I have two sisters. I'm the middle child so that explains a lot.
My parents are awesome. They're both retired now and just live in the dream, always there to support me. My family has a background in music through my grandpa and my great-grandpa.
They had a Joe Patek orchestra. It was a polka band that toured all over Texas. I'd have to say I've probably got my whole music inclination from them. Since I was a baby, my grandpa was singing songs to us that kind of gave me the whole, “I'm not shy sort of thing.”
I'd just be getting on picnic tables and singing to my relatives during holidays and whatever else.
That got me to where I am today. Additionally, I just got married in October. He's a great guy and very, very supportive as well. He has a passion as well for photography and video. So he helps his friends out with their dream and passion too. So it's really cool that we respect each other and support each other in both of those endeavors.
TCT: How do you find a work-life balance with your growing career?
JMP: Since earning my degree it's always been important to me to make sure I made real use of it. It was in public relations/marketing. It’s helped me on my music side as well. I've learned to treat myself as a brand and put my pride aside.
That's gotten me a lot of opportunities.
TCT: Who is the person or persons in your life that has continuously supported your music career?
JMP: I'd say my dad and my sisters were probably my biggest number ones. My mom was a bit skeptical at first because she just came from, you know, a really small town and just wasn't really immersed in the music the way my dad was because of his dad and his grandpa.
They've been there since day one. My mom is obviously now I'm like my biggest fan, so no complaints. She's wearing all my shirts. She's wearing my shirt right now. They're in Maine traveling. So like she's wearing all my things. She bought all the jewelry, like all of it. So my family has been my biggest supporter through it all.
I was able to play some gigs for my grandpa. He knew since day one that I wanted to perform because I saw him do it. So his getting to see me playing my shows was very meaningful to me. He's passed on now, but just to have that, that he was able to get to see that before he left us like that, that was huge.
I knew he was my biggest supporter too. And literally just those people maybe I don't even know them, but friends and fans that have just taken a chance on me to listen. I may not be for everybody, but the ones who do like me, we maintain like relationships and they come to shows. I've had people that traveled way too many hours to come to see my shows and it blows my mind because sometimes I play to two people during my performances.
Sometimes I play a hundred people, but those little moments like that are still worth it to me, especially when you have a two-person kind of night. Like those people that have been there since day one, since they've heard me play like in some tiny little bar or some giant venue that's been really important to me.
So I mean family, but also those people that have stuck around and been my fans through everything has been so cool.
TCT: You said you’ve performed for hundreds of people, two people, and everything in between. How do you get through a two-person (in the audience) set?
JMP: It's so hard because let me tell you when I get these amazing opportunities, like for example, to play like that sold-out show with Shane Smith at Gruene Hall. You are so spoiled when you get those opportunities and then there'll be these other shows that I just played recently at a venue where there was hardly anyone there.
It humbles you real quick, which I appreciate it but sucks at the time because. Hard to feed off the energy when there's only not a crowd. I try not to think of it in a negative way. I try to think of it as, “Alright, Jade, as it brought you back down, remember you are a normal person and not everyone's gonna like you”, or it’s just a bunch of different factors that happen. That's okay. You don't suck, so don't beat yourself up and the next one will just be even better.
TCT: What are you hoping to add to the country music genre?
JMP: I'm really hoping to bring my family background of coming from somewhere that is out of this world, an infusion of polka, not something that Texas music really is into at all right now. I want to bring the polka side of things. That’s how I make connections with people. I want to bring that aspect to the table that maybe not a lot of artists have listened to before.
I also want to be able to give women more representation in the genre compared to men because male artists are all over the place in regard to Texas music in general. I want to make my music reflect my experience of living in Texas.
Jade Marie Patek is one of the many musical treasures that Texas has to offer to the world. Despite this performance being a solo/acoustic show, she was still able to rock that stage. Personally, my favorite song of hers (so far) is “Dancing with the Devil”. So much so that I had it featured on my very first podcast episode. She’s going to go far and I recommend taking a look at her songs below.
You can connect with Jade Marie Patek on social media: her handle on Instagram is @JadeMariePatekMusic and on Twitter it’s @JadeMariePatek. Visit her website to view her next performances and purchase some merchandise from her store.