Fiddlin' Dwight Moody and his Memories of Whitey Grant

Fiddlin' Dwight Moody, legendary fiddler and retired pastor -
On September 17th, 2010, the Heavenly Choir received our buddy, Roy (Whitey) Grant to be with them. He was one of the best known musicians in out part of the country and a friend to many fans who love him dearly. Whitey had the gift of making his fans feel like he was one of them and he always took the time to listen to them. I first listened to him on the Briarhoppers Show in my home town of LaCrosse, Virginia, in the 1940s. My mother was a great fan of tradition country music and the radio would be on WBT – every afternoon when I came in from school. I never dreamed that one day I would be a part of his life in the field of music. I will always remember the times we played the Bob Evans Farms in Ohio. We always shared the beautiful drive though the mountains of North Carolina, Virginia and Ohio. The scenery the second weekend in October was breathtaking and Whitey & Hogan would pick some old tunes, one they always sang was” Fallen Leaves” written by Grandpa Jones. He was very close to his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and his life showed his love for Him. The Briarhoppers will never be the same but with the help of WBT Radio & Television we will keep their memory alive. The next time you hear "Do Yawl Know What Hit Is," the answer is –“Hit’s Briarhopper Time”.

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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!