Southern Ground

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05/20/2008

It’s not about the destination

.... but the discoveries along the way, so keep your eyes wide open!

From almost the beginning. Ok it's "almost" because when I met Zac in 2000 he'd been working the FloriGeorgiaBama music scene for 5 years, But I remember him sitting on his stool with a 1/2 diet Coke 1/2 Jager drink onstage, playing his acoustic solo for hours like it was fighting back or something, and he'd always have somebody new sitting in with him. I'd never seen anyone play an acoustic with as much intensity. I knew then he was going to push it all to the limit, and then break it and keep pushing. You should have seen the look on my folks faces when I said I was leaving my salaried position with benefits to drive around, take pictures of, and sell merchandise at shows for a guy that sits on a barstool and plays a guitar and sings. Who could blame them, right? Luckily all my folks love me and had open minds and now, just look at what is happening.

Our FloriGeorgiaBama folks from back in the day... you know what I'm talking about. You remember Zac in the tiny bars, Hopkins and Brighter Shade, Jimmy D and DMCB. So I don't drive the guys anymore, but I have been on the frontline, meeting all y'all when you check out the merch because you were just as amazed as I was the first time I saw Zac. And Coy's been with the band over a year now and Chris (Sweets) on the drums has come in and they complete this montage of musical excellence. Now I want to tell you guys something that honestly is one of the greatest parts of my job. This past Saturday night at the Carolina Crossroad Balloonfest in Roanoke Springs NC I was manning the merch and these two guys come up immediately after Zac and the guys performed one of their brand new songs, "Let it go". These 2 guys had never heard of ZBB but they HAD to have that song. It hit one of them where it needed to. They went on to tell me it was the message his friends had been trying to get out to him for whatever he'd been going through. They didn't elaborate but they didn't have to. It was the message. And the song gave him something he needed.

All I could do was promise him the song the guys had played for the 2nd time live EVER would be out there someday, and sent them off with the "Foundation" CD and full confidence he'll find a message in it that'll keep them loving life until it does. That was a story I had to tell all the guys, that one of their NEWEST songs had opened someone's eyes to the message that they bring out in song. As well as I know all of these guys, that is what it is about. If it was just money they all would be doing something else right now, I promise you. This is what they love to do. Play their own original music that is so pure and heartfelt and joyous that is changes people. It has the power to help people. That said the days of the small bars are done, the message is being put in front of large and unsuspecting audiences for some of the legends of the business and some of the hottest stars going today.

I know all our FloriGeorgiaBama friends are missing the old days when they could get their "fix" weekly, and they are missing it, but they are proud of these guys and they have to believe theirs is a message the world needs to hear. They already know the message, and you guys are ready to see it spread worldwide. I guess I'll have to learn more languages so when the crowds come and tell me they just heard a song that changed their life I'll be able to understand and thank them.

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