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Carolina Stories weekly series highlights the rich cultural and historical landscape that is South Carolina. From the Upstate to the Lowcountry, the stories are as geographically diverse as their subject matter and they are all produced by ETV's production teams.

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Carolina Stories

The Next Big Hootie



In 1985, long before late-night talk show host David Letterman – the oracle credited with giving the band their first big national break – ever heard “Hold My Hand,” four guys from the University of South Carolina ventured from their dorm room to jam out at a local bar called Pappy’s. What started as a will-play-for-beer gig birthed South Carolina’s musical force, called Hootie and the Blowfish. The unexpected success that followed the concert at Pappy’s marked the turning point for the rookie band and the beginning of a period in rock and roll history affectionately known as the Hootie era. Featuring old and new footage from some of South Carolina’s best music venues like Columbia’s legendary live music club Rockafellas and The Windjammer on the Isle of Palms, this flashback also includes candid conversations with members of Hootie – and industry insiders – about the highs and lows of life in the music biz.


In-Depth

In the early ‘90s, the “Seattle Sound,” gained mainstream notoriety as Nirvana created a new genre known as “grunge” and blazed a trail for groups like Pearl Jam, Soundgarden and Alice in Chains. Not many years later, a certain up-and-coming South Carolina band enjoyed similar good fortune, storming onto the music scene with their own refreshingly distinct sound. “Hootie killed grunge,” asserts Otis Taylor, music writer at The State. But why didn’t Hootie’s then-unrivaled success have the same pied piper effect on South Carolina bands that Nirvana did with bands in the Seattle area? This hour-long road trip with homegrown Palmetto State rockers takes a nostalgic glance back at the accomplishments of Hootie and the Blowfish as well as the missed opportunities and unrealized dreams of their contemporaries. Other bands spotlighted in the program include Cravin Melon, Edwin McCain, Danielle Howle, The Root Doctors, Treadmill Trackstar, Jay Clifford, and Jump Little Children. Featuring old and new footage from some of South Carolina’s best music venues like Columbia’s legendary live music club Rockafellas and The Windjammer on the Isle of Palms, this flashback also includes candid conversations with members of Hootie – and industry insiders – about the highs and lows of life in the music biz. Then, when all is said and done, the documentary boldly peeks behind the velvet curtain in hopes of discovering who might be poised to be the next big Hootie.

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