1. Zac Brown Band is an American country music band based in Atlanta, Georgia, on the Southern Ground Artists label.
2. The band has released four studio albums, three of which have been in collaboration with Atlantic Records, along with two live albums, one greatest hits album, and two extended plays.
3. They have also charted sixteen singles on the Billboard country singles charts, of which twelve have reached number 1: “Chicken Fried”, “Toes”, “Highway 20 Ride”, “Free”, “As She’s Walking Away”, “Colder Weather”, “Knee Deep”, “Keep Me in Mind”, “Goodbye in Her Eyes”, “Sweet Annie”, “Homegrown”, and “Loving You Easy”.
4. Their first Atlantic album, The Foundation, is certified triple-platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America, while its follow-ups, You Get What You Give and Uncaged (Opened at No.1 with 234,000 sales), are certified platinum.
5. He was raised on Lake Lanier by his mother and stepfather, a dentist in Cumming, Georgia.
6. The 11th of 12 children, Brown attended Mashburn Elementary School in Cumming; Lakeview Academy in Gainesville, Georgia; and South Forsyth High School in Cumming.
7. He later moved to Dahlonega, Georgia, at age 17, where he graduated from Lumpkin County High School.
8. Brown was given his mother’s guitar at age 8, and one of his stepfather’s patients was enlisted to teach him classical guitar.
9. He completed two years of lessons, but soon after developed a love for bluegrass music while playing with his father and brother on weekend visits.
10. While still in high school, with James Taylor as his inspiration, Brown began playing solo gigs in local venues, performing country and pop cover songs.
11. Brown attended the University of West Georgia, where he became a member of the Zeta Kappa chapter of the Kappa Alpha Order fraternity.
12. He was also a camp counselor at Camp Mikell in Toccoa, Georgia, and Camp Glisson, a United Methodist summer camp and retreat center located in Dahlonega, Georgia.
13. In 2002, Brown was traveling with a heavy tour schedule of approximately 200 dates a year.
14. The initial Zac Brown lineup consisted of Brown, on acoustic guitar and lead vocals, backed by a drummer and a bass guitarist.
15. In 2003, Brown started his own label, called Home Grown it was later renamed “Southern Ground” for legal reasons.
16. In 2004, Brown opened a music club and restaurant with his father in the Lake Oconee area of Georgia, called “Zac’s Place” where the fare was southern-style cooking.
17. A developer bought the restaurant and, in turn, the Zac Brown Band bought a tour bus and began touring full-time, playing rock and country clubs, as well as folk and jam band festivals.
18. The release of the Zac Brown Band’s first independent album, Home Grown, occurred during the same year.
19. Also in 2004, Brown added violinist/fiddler and tenor vocalist Jimmy De Martini to the lineup.
20. According to an interview with De Martini, he explained that John Driskell Hopkins, Brown’s frequent songwriting collaborator, was working as a bartender at Sidelines Sports Bar in Kennesaw, Georgia, at the time, where the Zac Brown Band frequently performed.
21. Durette suggested De Martini to Brown, who was wanting a “lead instrument” in his band, as well as a harmony singer.
22. After doing several performances with the band at the club, Brown asked De Martini to become a permanent member, to which De Martini gladly obliged.
23. Brown met Hopkins in 1998 when Hopkins was hosting an open mic night at CJ’s Landing in Buckhead, Georgia.