A lot has changed for The Southern Experience Band since they launched a nationwide tour in Greenwood in April. The band was recently signed by an international talent company and took home the Charlotte Music Awards’ top country music honor for 2013. The band returns to Greenwood this Saturday at the Oxygen Lounge with doors opening at 8pm.
The band kicked off their “Pennies in a Mason Jar” in Greenwood on April 5. The name of the tour came from a single they recorded the day before the tour started. The song was penned by Ninety Six natives Dwayne Moore and Jeff Sargent after a particularly tough time in their lives.
Terry Gage, the manager for The Southern Experience Band and a voting member of the Country Music Association, met Moore and Sargent through mutual friends and came to Greenwood to look at the songs that Moore and Sargent had been working on. When she heard “Pennies in a Mason Jar” she knew the duo had something special.
“When I heard the song, I knew it was so relevant to today’s times,” said Gage, who is also a National and International member of the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville. “So many people were living a good life and then went to counting change in literally a matter of days.”
The Southern Experience Band was recently named the 2013 Country Music Band of the Year by the Charlotte Music Awards. The band will receive their award on Nov. 21 when they perform at the Red Carpet Event of the Hollywood Music in Media Awards at the Henry Fonda Theater in Los Angeles. Before that day the band will be busy, giving a special VIP performance at Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville in Nashville and performing with Carolina Music on Tour at Busby’s on Wiltshire Boulevard in Hollywood. They will also be appearing on the Tony “D” Show, a cable access show in Charlotte and has had the video for their song “Fight the Fight” featured on the Outdoor Channel’s “Hunting the World Southern Style.” The band performed at the opening ceremonies of the American Legion World Series last month.
The recognition the band has received caught the attention of Mark Hyman, president and CEO of Ashley Talent International, LLC. ATI represents such music heavyweights as Quiet Riot, The Crickets and UFO, among many others.
The accolades have not dampened the spirit of what “Pennies in a Mason Jar” is all about. The band passed around a mason jar at their April performance in Greenwood. The money collected was donated to the Make A Wish Foundation. The band still passes around a mason jar every time the song is played and donates all of the money collected to the Make A Wish Foundation.
Mandy Blair, a Waxhaw, N.C. native, will open up for The Southern Experience Band. Blair will be debuting three more original songs from Mason Jar studios. The 23-year-old Blair met the Mason Jar crew at a Charlotte Music Awards event and has been working the group ever since. The Southern Experience Band is also excited to have Tim Lawter, an original member of the Marshall Tucker Band on hand to run the sound for Saturday night’s show.