Blackberry Smoke at The Georgia Theatre in Athens on August 5th, 2011.

Let me set the stage for you as I walk down North Lumpkin Street in Athens, GA. It’s a college town filled with bars, shops, restaurants, students and tourist filling the streets.  It is a very typical southern college town with southern appeal. I am headed to The Georgia Theater to interview the boys in Blackberry Smoke before their appearance at the venue. They are not just performing for fans at the Georgia Theater but it is also a Live DVD shoot with “Special Guests”.

As I look up the street a block ahead on my right I spot “THE” bus where I am supposed to meet Trey Wilson, Blackberry Smokes tour manager for a quick little Q & A, at 6:30.  Well, like a typical female I am ten minutes late entering the tour bus. I step up on the first step into the bus and the driver opens the privacy door between the driver’s seat and the rest of the bus and he asked if he could help me. I see some peering eyes out of the back of the bus and quickly realize I am on the “Special Guests” bus. Mistake number two. Late and the wrong bus, ugh. He directed me to the corner of West Clayton Street where their bus was parked.

As I climb onto the right bus I fumble with the handle and Trey Wilson opens the door for me and I see some warm friendly smiling faces I hadn’t seen since February. I quickly let the guys know I was sorry for being late and jump right in with hugs and let them know that this won’t be a typical question and answer session that they are used to getting. I let them know right off the bat that they were not my questions but they were James Lipton’s from The Actors Studio. Yes, the ten questions that Mr. Lipton asks every guest that sits on his stage for an interview.

Here is where I am sorry if you expected to read about Charlie Starr’s (CS) favorite musician growing up or Brit Turners (BT) favorite type of symbol or Richard Turners (RT) favorite bass strings or Paul Jackson’s (PJ) foot pedals or Brandon Stills (BS) influences. You are not going to get that but you will get ten questions that they have never been asked and you will get a good feel for who these guys are by their quick answers.


1) What is your favorite word?

CS: Lonesome

RT: Heartsick

BT: Great

PJ: Killer

BS: Umm


2) What is your least favorite word?

CS: Husk

RT: Trooper

BT: Fever


BS: Idunno


3) What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally?

CS: Hank Williams

RT: Running water

BT: Getting up early

PJ: Smiles

BS: Alone time


4) What turns you off creatively, spiritually or emotionally?

CS: Fake people

RT: Brandon sleeping

BT: Getting up late

PJ: Lameness

BS: Getting up early


5) What sound or noise do you love?

CS: Silence

RT: Children’s voices

BT: Coffee percolating

PJ: Sleeping babies

BS: Cicadas


6) What sound or noise do you hate?

CS: Silence

RT: Starting a car that’s already started

BT: A grease Fryer cooking

PJ: Dryer buzzing

BS: an ungrounded amp


7) What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?

CS: I’d love to be a Luthier. (not limited to but a guitar maker)

RT: Record Producer

BT: Tool leather

PJ: Pizzeria owner

BS: Professional Fisherman


8) What profession other than your own would you NOT like to attempt?

CS: Proctologist

RT: See the answer on question above and add this- Not like Phil Spector

BT: Podiatrist

PJ: Pet shop owner

BS: Dentist


Everyone’s favorite James Lipton question is next but of course it is “R-Rated”.


9) What is your favorite curse word?

CS: Pussy

RT: Fuuuuuuuuck (long and drawn out)

BT: Shit


BS: Shit


Last but not least.


10)  If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?

CS: Atta Boy!

RT: Jesus Christ, you’re late.

BT: Well Done!

PJ: Don’t worry, she’s not here.

BS: Didn’t think you were gonna make it—LOL


Before I stepped off the bus I thanked the guys for putting up with me and let them finish getting ready for their show that night. I had to go get ready myself because after driving for an hour and a half with the top down on my Jeep in the 90 degree weather, I was surprised they let me on the bus.


I am not going to continue with a review of how magnificent the show at The Georgia Theater was. What I am going to tell you is that when you buy the Live DVD of the show that night, you will NOT be disappointed. You can see the guys at a venue near you and check out the latest updates by visiting their WEBSITE


*** I have to admit while asking the questions Brit’s answer to his least favorite word actually made my heart ache when he threw the word FEVER out. Knowing what the Turner family endured with Lana, Brit and Shannon’s daughter, over the last year and a half really made me thankful for the great news. Diagnosed with stage four Neuroblastoma in December 2009, Lana Turner was diagnosed CANCER FREE in the Summer of 2011!