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Spend New Year’s Eve with Zac Brown

Gainesville-based band will play New Year's Eve at Philips Arena

POSTED: December 23, 2010 12:30 a.m.

North Georgia-based Zac Brown Band will ring in the new year Dec. 31 at Philips Arena.

The show ends a whirlwind year for the band, in which they won the Country Music Association's award for Best New Artist, headlined a cruise and got four Grammy nominations.

The group's newest album, "You Get What You Give," was No. 1 in sales the week it debuted, with 153,000 copies sold.

The Times spoke recently with John Hopkins, a Gainesville native who is the band's bass player and one of its vocalists.

"Country radio has been one of the best formats in radio these days, and to be embraced by so many country fans has really, really been an awesome thing for us," Hopkins said.

"Our fans are more music lovers, in general, than they are necessarily country fans."

Hopkins said the band is looking forward to the Philips Arena show.

"I just can't believe that we're taking over Widespread (Panic's) gig," he said. "I don't really know how we got it, but we're excited to do it.

"We're going to play through the midnight hour, and on till probably 1 or 2 in the morning."



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