Major News!

It has been about 70 years since the WBT Briarhoppers hired a young lady to be a part of the band. In our 75th anniversary, we are proud to announce that Alana Flowers, of the Flowers Family Band, has accepted our invitation to be a banjo-pickin' Briarhopper! By historical count, she is the 37th person to be a Briarhopper.

A junior at Belmont Abbey College, Alana is an award-winning banjoist who has made a name for herself with her banjo days on Keith Larson's WBT radio show and winning major banjo competition at places like Fiddler's Grove and others.

This marks the new generation of WBT Briarhoppers; we want to insure the band is around for another 75 years. Thanks, Alana, for accepting! Your new name is Alana Briarhopper Flowers!

We will be naming other new musicians with a history with the band and we will announce those in another blog entry.

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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!