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WATCH: High School Football Star Jackson Dean Gave National Anthem a Country Spin


Back in 2018 at Gambrills, Maryland, a high school senior took the chance to perform his very own unique version of the National Anthem. The senior football player took his warm-up for their big game through singing.

Jackson Dean Nicholson went out ahead of his team during game day and lead the community to sing the national anthem in a way you’ve probably never heard before.

Jackson Nicholson at Arundel High School
Source: YouTube

Jackson Dean Nicholson

It was during an annual seniors’ night in Arundel High School when Jackson Dean surprised his teammates with an outstanding performance. The Wildcats came out winning the game, 49-21, which led to their annual senior’s night a success.

But Dean’s winning moment happened even before the game started. Dean, wearing his full football uniform and his helmet on the side with a guitar on his hand, appeared on the field. With a marching band and a cheerleaders team behind him, he delivered his own version of The Star-Spangled Banner.

With his twangy voice, Dean began his countrified version of the national anthem. As he hit the last note, a banner was raised behind him and his teammates ran through it, creating the perfect ending for his outstanding performance.

His Big Break

But Dean’s talents did not flourish as fast as anyone would have thought. It was a product of hard work and tons of posts on social networking sites. His viral rendition of the national anthem seen by over a million people helped boost his online presence all across the country.

After his big break, Jackson Dean continued to perform in Maryland. Dean has also been featured in several opening performances for Kane Brown, Jake Owen, Brother Osborne, and now has signed a publishing deal with Little Louder Music.

Jackson Dean and his band, The Outsiders was formed in 2018. His band members were Sean Mercer (drums), Rich Kolm (bass), and Brandon Aksteter (guitar). Jackson Dean also released his album titled, “Ain’t No Saint” on March 30, 2019. Following his graduation from high school, Jackson Dean now devotes his time to his music career.

Ain’t No Saint

Together with producer Sean Mercer, Dean Jackson launched his personal EP, “Ain’t No Saint.” Their collaboration produced a playlist full of promising songs.

Though still young, Jackson Dean has continually lined himself among the artists to look forward to in the country music industry. His songs had continued to climb the charts in iTunes Country Charts where he debuted at the 53rd spot and still gradually climbing up the ranks.

His ability to express his emotions into his self-penned songs and their lyrical value is really remarkable for a young singer. This brought in some comparisons with the now Country music legend, Chris Stapleton. The fusion of Americana, Old Country, and Blues makes Dean’s songs stand out.

The musical style, emotion that he pours in every song and his twangy voice Dean have produced songs that have brought several people’s eyes into tears. One that’s worth mentioning was “Brother Come Home” from his first album, The Flood Zone. Check out also “Letters Home” and “Man Upstairs” from his second album “Who We Are.” Dean has made the trip back and forth to Nashville to record some originals. He has also continued to play in local bars and other venues.

A Rising Star

Jackson Dean has gone from posting videos of him singing at local venues including his viral rendition of the National Anthem to finally becoming one of the most awaited young artists of today. His rise in the Country music industry might just be around the corners.

Dean also has gained some good buddies and mentors on his side. Luke Bryan invited him for coffee, Steve Harvey gave him the best piece of advice, and his consultant, B Chord founder Scott Lehr, has been working out to cultivate Dean’s brand, social media accounts, and some occasional bookings.

Lehr has said that he was not surprised to see how successful Dean’s career has become and will become. With his tremendous talent, the ceiling of success for this young artist would go off the charts.


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