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, Tom Warlick, Alana Flowers, Hannah Flowers, Dillon Flowers, Donnie Little, and Little Ellie Flowers keep the band alive, 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!


The Briarhoppers with Homer Drye's Family!

Homer Drye joined the band in 1936 along with Billie Burton Daniel.  Homer left in 1940 and landed in Raleigh and WPTF.  There, he became Homer A. Briarhopper, formed the Dixie Dudes, the Homer A. Briarhopper Band, and the Daybreak Gang which performed mornings on WRAL TV.  Homer also founded the popular Briarhopper Club near Raleigh.

Well, The Briarhoppers performed at IBMA's World of Bluegrass in Raleigh, NC, on September 28, 2013, and guess who showed up?  Homer's son, Tim, and his wife, Lynda.  It was fun to hear Tim's stories and the see folks go to him when they found out he was Homer's son. 

It was great to see Homer's family for sure!

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