Songwriter and pioneer in the Americana music genre. His Austin-based music group, Uncle Walt's Band, recorded An American in Texas and several other albums.
He began playing the guitar when he was thirteen years old. He briefly attended Wofford College in his native South Carolina.
He founded a Nashville, Tennessee-based band called The Contenders.
With his wife Heidi, he raised a daughter named Haley. He was a passenger on the ill-fated ValuJet Flight 592, which crashed in the Florida Everglades in the spring of 1996, killing everyone on board.
A year after Hyatt's death, country singer Lyle Lovett and other musicians performed a PBS Austin City Limits tribute to him.