friend (Frank Holiday) asked me if I would go with him to Atlanta. "Why?" I asked. He said he was going to practice music. He said he had an "almost band" and they needed a singer and my friend with me said, "He sings" and Frank asked me if that was true. I said, "Yeah" and he went and got me a stack of al- bums and gave me a list of songs and said, "Learn these - we will go next weekend and practice." We went up the next weekend and the

rest of the band wanted to hear me sing and we did "Mississippi Queen" and that was my first song with any band. They hired me on the spot. The name of that band was "Intre- pid" and I am still good friends with all those guys today. And shall we say, it's been all down hill from there. The music bug bit me and I have not been able to shake it yet. To me, playing music is something that you have to live, not just do for a living.

How long was that band together? About a year and I grew tired of living in At- lanta so I moved back home.

How long before you got another band going? Well, I laid it down for awhile 'til I went out one night to a local club and there was a band there called "Catt" and they asked me to sit in and sing one. I did, and then went and sat back down and they came over and asked me to do another one again. I did, and when I was getting ready to leave to take my date home, Will Arnold came up and asked me if I wanted a job and I said, "Sure" and I went home and packed my bags that night and we went on the road. And we were on the road for like 18 months and then I got at odds with Will, so I came back home and decided to give it a rest for a while. I went to work for about two years ‘til

again I was at a bar and this guy I knew came

to me and the same thing happened again, and I still feel bad 'cause I took this other guy's job. That band was called "Raw Energy" and I played with them for five years. We were in Daytona Beach in February, 1980 and we ran in to this guy named Rocky Manbret- tie. He was a former roadie for Molly Hatchet. He needed a job so we put him to work and we went back out on the road and we ended up back in La Grange. We did not have an agent at the time, we were booking club to club, word of mouth and it was scary at times, not much money but enough to keep us alive. Rocky suggested we make a tape and

take it to Macon to a guy he knew named Pat Armstrong who was handling Molly Hatchet. Rocky and I went so he could get his royalty check from a song that he wrote for Hatchet and get Pat to listen to our band. I did not know it, but they had been having a lot of trouble with Danny Joe Brown's health and it's hard to be on the road and sick. Rocky gave Pat the tape and he cranks it up and he listens to the first song. Then he fast forwards it to another song and then he went to the end and listened to that song and turned it off and said, "Son, you have a hell of a voice." I was flattered and said, "Thank you." And he asked me to sign a contract with him as my personal manager and I said, "Sure, but what about the rest of my band?" He said we would get them later, and at that point I knew something big was up.

So that's how you got the job with Molly Hatchet? Not yet. I walked out the door but he caught me and said, "Hey, I might ask you in the fu- ture to go with another band to further your career." I said I would think about it and he said, "Fair enough." I got in the car to go home and he had Tom Werman on the phone playing that tape for him and Tom told him to hire me right then. Three weeks later we had


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