Blackberry Smoke, Southern Rock & Mhdb     - Embedded Youtube videos, April 6, 2022 -     German

Although a jazzy rock or rocking jazz drummer, Wolfgang Billmann (Mhdb drummer and founder) has barely played southern rock, except in some sessions, but was heavily influenced by this style and thus also Mhdb. These influences are still implemented in the Mhdb style. The collective improvisation of the New Orleans and Dixieland jazz was found again by Wolfgang Billmann as essential in southern rock. Already in the mid-1950s - during the Dixieland revival in West Berlin ('Badewanne', 'Eierschale', ...) -, Wolfgang Billmann had been impressed by this collective improvisation, when he was about 7 years old and heard rehearsing Dixieland bands from a youth centre (1) next to his primary school (2). Until the early 1970s and as a (at that time) jazz rock, soul and funk drummer ('Quasimodo' 1969, 'International' end-1960s), Wolfgang Billmann also occasionally attended traditional jazz events at the 'Eierschale', but he only became aware again of that collective improvisation in "Honky Tonk Woman" by The Rolling Stones in 1969. Around 1970 southern rock was in its nascent stages and such other influences were slide guitar und hammond organ.

Papa Bue's Viking Jazzband, "Schlafe Mein Prinzchen" (collective improvisation/soloing in New Orleans, Dixieland or traditional jazz), 1959

Apart from Lynyrd Skynyrd, "Sweet Home Alabama", early southern rock-like influences on Mhdb have been :

The Rolling Stones, "Honky Tonk Women" (New Orleans-sounding collective improvisation/soloing), 1969

Rod Stewart (voc), "Maggie May" (hammond B3 organ), 1971

Jo Jo Gunne,"Run Run Run" (slide guitar), 1972

Lynyrd Skynyrd, "Sweet Home Alabama" (southern rock classic), 1973-74

Blackberry Smoke (outstanding live sound & style, have influenced Mhdb greatly in recent years. Blackberry Smoke have perfected southern rock and tremendously revived the live music.

Blackberry Smoke, 'Concert Entier A La Maroquinerie A Paris', Blackberry Smoke, 'Concert Entier A La Maroquinerie A Paris', March 25, 2017, 1:39:57. Although Brandon Still (key) joined in the band, he is not in the video.

Wolfgang Billmann would have liked to have been with Blackberry Smoke in Minneapolis, USA, August 2018, but then saw the band in Germany: Hanover, October 2018, and in Berlin, June 2019.

(1) Youth centre until approx. 1960 in 'Schweizerhof', Walter Schloss (manager, then in youth centre Brettnacher/Sundgauer Strasse)
(2) Berlin-Zehlendorf (south): Teltower Damm, Leo-Baeck-Strasse, John F. Kennedy School

German - Mozart has the blues