Metal Muthas: Ben Hutcherson

Every so often, we take a little time on Mondays to pay tribute to the Muthas! That is, reprinting the adorable metal/maternal Q&As that run in the magazine. Today, enjoy Justin Norton’s chat with Kay Hutcherson, Metal Mutha of Ben Hutcherson of dB faves Khemmis and Glacial Tomb.

Can you tell us a little more about yourself?
I was the third of five children. My father worked in the automobile industry, so we moved around between Detroit and Chicago. When we were teenagers, he decided to move us down south. I went to college at Vanderbilt and then moved to the Nashville area, where I met Ben’s dad. I was a special education reading teacher. After retiring, I worked at a library for the next 10 years.What was your son like growing up?
He was different. [Laughs] He was very creative. From an early age, he liked to draw a lot. When he was young, anything he found—from a walking stick to a ruler—he played like an instrument. In the earliest picture we have of him, he is using his grandmother’s walking stick as a guitar. By the time he was in high school, he did rock and metal bands. Before that, he was always playing with his family. He listened a lot to his grandfather’s bluegrass band, [as well as] cousins who had hard rock bands. He also went to see a lot of jazz and country and old classic rock ‘n’roll.What did you think when he got into crazy heavy metal music?
I loved it! I was like the world’s oldest groupie. [Laughs] He was so young then that no one could sign for the U-Haul trailers, so I always signed for them and put them on the road. They played in a lot of VFWs and really odd clubs. There was a club called the Daily Planet where his dad played years before that had been reimagined. I remember being in there thinking, “I think I [was] here 20 years ago!” We always enjoyed going and hearing him live. Given that we were the oldest people in the audience, a lot of the people that owned the clubs knew us.

What do you think about Ben’s successes? It’s not easy to make a run as a heavy metal musician.
I couldn’t be prouder. He’s worked so hard to do this, and it’s been an honor to watch their rise.

What’s something most people don’t know about your son?
How caring and supportive he has always been to his parents and grandparents.