Ken Block and Andrew Copeland, the co-founders of Sister Hazel, guested on The Catalyst Sessions Friday. They began the program with an acoustic rendition of “All For You,” the band’s biggest, and most enduring, hit song.
They chose this one, Block explained, to “remind people who we are.”
As if anyone could forget. Platinum-selling Sister Hazel, based in Gainesville, is one of the most successful touring and recording bands to come out of Florida. With Block and Copeland on the front lines, the group still has all its original members – the same guys that came together to make music more than 25 years ago.
That is most likely a record.
The conversation covered a lot of ground, from Gainesville’s fertile early 1990s music scene to Sister Hazel’s up-close-and-personal relationship with fans worldwide, which has kept the band’s numbers, and spirits, up. They began a successful music cruise, The Rock Boat, 21 years ago, and it’s still going strong.
We also talked about their Lyrics For Life charity, which has raised nearly $3 million for pediatric cancer research and family support.
Block and Copeland will perform four shows for the Ruth Eckerd Hall lobby cabaret series, Sept. 3-7. The first three of the socially-distanced performances sold out the day they went on sale.
“Ken and I, the last couple of years, have gotten back to getting to do a few more acoustic shows than what we had done for several years, because the band stays so busy,” said Copeland. “It’s been a lot of fun – but to tell you the truth, we really fly by the seat of our pants at these shows.”
They might have the outline of a set list, he added, “but he and I will tell some stories … and if people request songs, we’ll try to pull ‘em off if we know them.
“I don’t want to oversell it, but there’s a lot of laughs, and hopefully some good music mixed in.”
The duo concluded the session with a blistering performance of “Champagne High.”
The Catalyst Sessions is taking a much-needed break next week, and will return Aug. 31. All episodes are archived on the Catalyst YouTube page.