Back to the 1960s!

Imagine the WBT Briarhoppers' collective surprise when they turned on the radio, put the dial on 1110 AM to WBT, and who should be on the air but Briarhopper friend Ty Boyd! For 150 years (we wish it was, but he reigned from 1961 to 1973), Ty was The Morning Man on radio. With the unenviable task of taking over Grady Cole's spot behind the mic, Ty succeeded to join the pantheon of radio giants which include Cole, Charles Crutchfield, Doug Mayes, Doug Bell, and eventually, H.A. Thompson, Don Russell, and a scant few others. Now the head of Ty Boyd Executive Learning Systems, he has again worked his way to the top in executive training. Go to to see what he is up to! The picture is from

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The Legendary Briarhoppers!

In 1934, a potential advertiser called WBT's Charles Crutchfield to ask if the station had a hillbilly band to help advertise its products. Telling a fib, Crutch said "Yes," which led to the birth of the Briarhoppers. The name comes from WBT announcer Bill Bivens who, during a hunting trip with Crutch, was startled by a rabbit jumping out of a thicket, and Bill yelled, "Look at that briarhopper!" At that moment, Crutch found the name for his hillbilly band.

The original band members were Johnny McAllister, Big Bill Davis, Don White, Thorpe Westerfield, Clarence Etters, and Jane Bartlett. The last original 1934 Briarhopper, Don White, died in 2003. Billie Burton Daniel, who joined the group in 1936, is happy and well in Wilmington, NC. Since that time, The Briarhoppers' fans are/were Bill Monroe, Doc Watson, Earl Scruggs (who filled in on banjo a few times), Curly Seckler, Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly, and many other entertainment stars.

In keeping with the tradition, the band kept going through the years by adding new musicians to those who left the station or who died. Today, Alana Flowers and Tom Warlick head the band with their stage show including the old Briarhopper songs, new songs, and the original scripted commercials of Peruna, Kolor-Bak, Zymole Trokeys, and Radio Girl Perfume! Enjoy this site and learn about the Briarhoppers' storied past and the bright future that is ahead. Don't turn that dial...Hit's Briarhopper Time!