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Blackberry Smoke Plays Name Game With Black Crowes

Southern Ground Records

Blackberry Smoke is just a few days away from releasing their debut album, The Whippoorwill, on Zac Brown‘s label, Southern Ground. The group boasts an eclectic blend of several different styles of music, including soul, country and blues — which is why it seems fitting that their unique name came from one of rock music’s most successful bands.

“Our name came from Chris Robinson from the Black Crowes,” lead singer Charles Starr tells The Boot. “We’ve been friends with him for a long time. [Bandmates] Brit [Turner] and Richard [Turner] and others have known him for a long, long time, with the Atlanta connection. In about 2000, we had formed the band out of the ashes of another band, so we had a name and booked a show or two, and then found out we couldn’t use that name. I was like, ‘Don’t look at me. I’m horrible at naming bands. You don’t want to know what I would call it.’ Chris was there, hanging out, drinking beer and having a smoke. He was spitting out some things that were silly, and he goes, ‘Blackberry Smoke,’ and we were like, ‘Hey, that’s good.’”

The five-man outfit spent the last several years on a number of indie labels before joining the Southern Ground roster. While they may not have had the backing of a major label, they still developed a strong — and growing — fan base, thanks to their willingness to work as hard or harder than any other act.

“Twelve years ago we formed, and we started traveling immediately,” Charles explains. “Since we’re not being handed things on a silver platter, we had to make ourselves visible. We’re a touring band. That’s what we do.”

True to their reputation as a touring band, Blackberry Smoke has upcoming shows in Georgia, Pennsylvania and Iowa. Check out their tour schedule here.

Watch Blackberry Smoke Perform Live

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Watch Blackberry Smoke Perform ‘The Whippoorwill’

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