Shag Doctorz to headline street dance
This year’s Bright Leaf Hoedown will be a homecoming of sorts for Johnny Gooch and Bobby Ruppe of Spartanburg, South Carolina. They are founding members of the former Dynamic Breakers, a South Carolina beach band that was known as one of the best beach bands in the southeast for several decades.
Their lead singer for several years was Billy Scott, who had national recognition as the lead singer of the Georgia Prophets. Back in the early '80s Claudia Vernon Smith, the Executive Director of the Chamber of Commerce, and Stuart Watlington, Chamber Board Member then, and again now, booked the “Breakers” to play at the Hoedown.
That first booking for the Hoedown turned into a great friendship with the band, and The Dynamic Breakers came back to play at the Hoedown numerous times in the '80s and '90s. Watlington says, “They would always be the featured group on Saturday night, and always gave the Chamber of Commerce a discounted rate, and even donated their lighting and sound for the entire Hoedown on Saturdays. They became like family to the Chamber of Commerce, and the Hoedown audience loved hearing them perform. Claudia’s parents, Jean and El Vernon, thought so much of them, that they extended an open invitation to the band to stay at their farm cabin in Semora any time they came to perform at the Hoedown. And they did stay there many times over the years.
The relationship that developed from that Band adopting Caswell County for so many years, and Caswell County loving to hear the Dynamic Breakers play, has been a friendship that has lasted now for 40 years. When The Dynamic Breakers reached their end, their drummer, Johnny Gooch, and their keyboardist, Bobby Ruppe, joined Larry Moore and the Shag Doctorz. The Shag Doctorz have been pleasing crowds for decades, and them coming to Caswell County with Johnny as their drummer and Bobby as their keyboardist will be a real reunion for beach music lovers in this area.
“I cannot over-emphasize the relationship that Johnny and Bobby have had with Caswell County for the last four decades helping the Hoedown, and it is really special to see them coming back again as part of Larry Moore and the Shag Doctorz, a phenomenal South Carolina Beach Music Ban,.” adds Watlington. “Claudia, as the Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, actually created the Bright Leaf Hoedown and it is amazing that this fall festival has continued for 40 years,”
The Bright Leaf Hoedown has always been a wonderful opportunity for all of our folks in Caswell County to get together on an annual basis, and has served as somewhat of a reunion time for many.