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  • May 31 2016 The Marshall Tucker Band At 45

    Pollstar Magazine


    The Marshall Tucker Band At 45

    By Jay Smith

    The Marshall Tucker Band’s Doug Gray talks with Pollstar about the group’s 45-year anniversary. “We didn’t know where we were going.  All we wanted to do was make that audience want more.  And that’s what we’re still doing,” Gray said.

    Formed in Spartanburg, S.C., in 1972 by musicians who had played together under the name Toy Factory during the ’60s, The Marshall Tucker Band took its name from a local piano tuner whose name was on the key to a rehearsal hall.  The original lineup included brothers Tommy and Toy Caldwell along with Jerry Eubanks, George McCorkle, Paul Riddle and Doug Gray.

    Nearly half a century later and The Marshall Tucker Band continues its long ride by performing timeless classics like “Fire On The Mountain,” “Can’t You See” and “Heard It in a Love Song.”  Gray has kept the band alive, not only through constant touring, but by digging deep into the vault for concert tapes recorded during some of the group’s epic shows. 

    Why do you think The Marshall Tucker Band has lasted so long?

    It has to be the fans that like the music.  The memories were created by the music that they first heard.  Then they kind of forced it down their kids’ throats by listening in the car going back and forth to work. … It’s a continuous cycle that I’ve seen two or three different times.  We’re not a real country  band.  We’re a rock ’n’ roll band that can play some jazz, can play some heavier rock ’n’ roll if we want it to.  When Poison does one of your songs … when Kid Rock does one …  Waylon Jennings charted better than we did with “Can’t You See.”  Kitty Wells did one of our songs and changed the lyrics from “I’m the kinda man” to “I’m the kinda woman.”  These things happened over the years and …... read more







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For a band classified by many as Southern rock, The Marshall Tucker Band never seemed satisfied with just rocking.  From their beginnings in the early '70s, their sound took plenty of changes musically -- swinging, grooving, jamming and going country -- and always stretched the boundaries.  Always a confident live act, MTB brought their A game to their South Carolina Music Hall of Fame Concert, recorded at Spartanburg S.C.'s Memorial Auditorium on Sept. 19, 1995.  Stellar sound quality enhances every detail, from the excitement of the crowd to lead singer Doug Gray's spirited drawl to multi-instrumentalist Jerry Eubanks' talented turns on flute, sax and Hammond organ.  MTB keep the energy high high from the start to finish with highlights aplenty, drafting fellow legends Charlie Daniels (dig his fiery fiddle work on "Long Hard Ride") and Allman Brothers stickmen Jaimoe and Butch Trucks, who join in with Daniels on the moving tribute to deceased guitarist / songwriter Toy Caldwell, "Searchin' for a Rainbow."

 -James Haag





One of the major Southern rock bands of the '70s, the Marshall Tucker Band was formed in Spartanburg, SC, in 1971 by singer Doug Gray, guitarist Toy Caldwell (born 1948, died February 25, 1993), his brother bassist Tommy Caldwell (born 1950, died April 28, 1980), guitarist George McCorkle (born 1947, died June 29th, 2007), drummer Paul Riddle, and reed player Jerry Eubanks. The group's style combined rock, country, and jazz and featured extended instrumental passages on which lead guitarist Toy Caldwell shone. The band was signed to Capricorn Records and released their debut album, The Marshall Tucker Band, in March 1973. They gained recognition through a tour with the Allman Brothers Band and found significant success during the course of the '70s, with most of their albums going gold. Their peak came with the million-selling album Carolina Dreams and its Top 15 single "Heard It in a Love Song" in 1977. Since then, the group has continued to write, record, and tour, and entertain fans from around the world. Friend them on Facebook!

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