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Billy Bob Thornton and The Boxmaster's Interview in the Badlands Radio Studio by Hank Moon

The Boxmasters were formed long ago when W.R. ‘Bud’ Thornton went in to a fast food chicken restaurant in Bellflower, California and got in an argument with the young man working the counter over a coleslaw incident. That young man was J.D. “J.D.” Andrew. The incident turned out to be a misunderstanding and the two had a laugh about it and they became fast friends. They started hanging out together and eventually discovered that they had both come to California in search of the big time in the world of ELECTRIC HILLBILLY Music, W.R. ‘Bud’ from Hot Springs, Arkansas and J.D. from Gypsum, Kansas. They also shared a love of 60’s pop and rock music and the 60’s in general. They decided to combine those things and form a band. But, they needed at least one more member. J.D. knew a talented, lead guitar player named Micheal Wayne Butler from Brattleboro, Vermont. They formed ‘The Boxmasters’ and rehearsed for months in J.D.’s apartment or ‘Flat’ as the British Invasion groups called it. They played small club dates around Bellflower, Long Beach, Hawthorne, Downey, Southgate and even as far as the Inland Empire as well as a couple of shows in Tecate, Mexico. And so the Boxmasters were born. What happened between now and then is somewhat hazy, but all you need to know is they finally landed a great record deal with Vanguard Records. W.R. ‘Bud’ Thornton handles the lead and background vocals and drums and tambourine. J.D. plays electric and acoustic guitar and bass and sings background vocals with Micheal Wayne on electric guitar and lap steel. They had one problem, which was, when playing live they needed more people to make all the racket they had made on the record. So, they started recruiting. W.R. had played in bands for years, so he snagged some of the old gang. He got Bradley ‘Brad’ Davis of Fort worth, Texas for mandolin, guitar, and background vocals. He and Brad had done solo projects together along with Teddy ‘ZigZag’ Andreadis who handles harmonica, organ and accordion (he’s Greek) and Mike ‘Bubba’ Bruce who plays drums live so W.R. can sing out front with the public. Bubba is an old friend from Alabama who is actually responsible for the name Boxmasters. More on that later. After the band was good and tight they still knew one thing was missing. Even though this was to be A 60’s band, it was still Hillbilly music. They had to have a steel guitar player. They asked around and after W.R.’s conversation with his old buddy Stephen Bruton they were lucky enough to get a guy from Baltimore named Marty ‘Riff’ Rifkin who plays steel guitar like nobody’s business. Then the original Boxmasters, W.R. ‘Bud’ Thornton, J.D. ‘J.D.’ Andrew and Micheal Wayne Butler could make their records and play whatever they wanted and have enough band fellas to play it all live. Teddy, Riff and Brad have all made contributions on the record as well. Bubba has his own combo in Atlanta that he keeps busy with when not touring with the Boxmasters. The boys include among their main influences, Michael Nesmith, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, the great bands of the British Invasion, The Monkees, The Wilburn Brothers, and Dell Reeves. Website
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