Blackberry Smoke (Photo submitted)
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Music City is set to ring in 2014 with a party like no other at the New Year’s Eve Bash on Broad.
In its fifth year, this free annual event has hosted names such as The Fray, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Will Hoge, Gabe Dixon Band and Jonny Lang, but this year it will bring in headliner and country music legend Hank Williams Jr. along with Blackberry Smoke.
“This year is going to be very special on New Year’s Eve,” Williams said in a press release. “Dec. 31 will mark the 60th anniversary of daddy’s death. For years, I have not performed on New Year’s Eve in honor of my father, but this year is a monumental year in the history of Hank Williams.
“If daddy had lived, he would have been 90 years old this year. I hope Music City is ready to boggie woogie, because Bocephus is going to bring the party to Nashville.”
Another group ready to bring the party are Southern rockers Blackberry Smoke, who just racked up more than 200 performances on the road in 2013.
“This is our first time to perform outside. Last year, we played Detroit with the Zac Brown Band, and the previous year we did Phillips Arena in Atlanta,” member Charlie Starr said.
Although the group brings the same level of intensity to the stage each time they perform, Starr admits there will be something special about this occasion.
“There are different levels of excitement for us,” he said. “There are certain shows where you can’t help to get more excited. This one even more so (because) it’s Nashville with Hank Jr.”
Looking back at 2013, Starr noted the year has treated Blackberry Smoke great with their latest album success, tour schedule and time with family, but they still have their eyes set on 2014 and what it holds.
“We toured for our album ‘The Whippoorwill,’ and it’s been a good run. Our career is a slow build. It’s a slowly rolling snowball. It’s about making the best music we can make,” Starr said.
“The Whippoorwill” was released through Zac Brown’s Southern Ground Records and placed them in good company with groups like Zac Brown Band, The Wood Brothers and Clay Cook.
“It’s great. We have all done shows together. The Wood Brothers are one of my favorite bands in the universe. It’s my kind of stuff,” Starr said in reference to the family he has acquired at Southern Ground Records. “Zac is great to work with. He’s so open-minded and wants us to do what makes us happy. That kind of freedom is what we all dream about – get a record deal, tour and do it on your own terms.”
Sharing the bill with “Bocephus” and Blackberry Smoke is soul stomping, pedal steel act Robert Randolph.
No stranger to Music City, Randolph has played the area several times and knows what it takes to keep a crowd moving all night.
Other acts on the bill include Brett Eldredge, Striking Matches and Kopecky Family Band.
Music will roll on all night while a 15-foot red music note will descend on Broadway at midnight. In true Southern fashion, fireworks provided by Pyro Shows will follow, accompanied by confetti cannons to say goodbye to 2013 and hello to 2014.
Fore more information, visit www.visitmusiccity.com.