Whitey Grant

UPDATE - 9/17/10 - 3 PM.  Whitey passed away this morning at 4:30 AM, exactly 12 hours from when the Briarhopper Radio Show would be beamed from WBT radio.  Whitey said, "didn't matter if it was 4:30 AM or PM...I would think of the Briarhopper fans!"  Please join the Briarhoppers in celebrating one of the last great Radio Stars, and the knowledge he is with his wife, Polly, once again.  More to come and I hope we have a celebration at WBT in the near future.  Many thanks to the Rev. Dwight Moody, i.e., Fiddlin' Dwight Moody of the WBT Briarhoppers, for being there.

We hope you send good vibes and prayers to Whitey and his family as he nears the end of his life...one of the last of the Golden Age Radio Stars...we will provide more data as we get it.  We know that his family turned on the radio to WBT 1110 so his last memories will be hearing his radio station.

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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!