Molly Hatchet’s early albums combined hard-rock with jam-oriented southern rock which made them one of the most popular southern rock bands of late 70’s and early 80’s. Like with many other groups in that same era, million selling albums and huge arena tours led to rock ‘n roll excess which took its toll on various members of the band and while southern rock’s popularity started to decline in the 80’s, it eventually led to their break-up.
Band was formed in early 70’s and took their name from 17th century axe swinging prostitute “Hatchet Molly”. They hail from Jacksonville, Florida and eventually made big impression on Lynyrd Skynyrd front man Ronnie Van Zant, who let Molly Hatchet put together their first demos in Skynyrd’s recording studio. Van Zant was also supposed to produce their debut album, but after his tragic death in 1977, Tom Werman took over the producing duties.
Molly Hatchet’s recorded self-titled debut album with classic line-up featuring Dave Hlubek, Steve Holland, and Duane Roland on guitars,Danny Joe Brown on vocals, Banner Thomas on bass and Bruce Crump on drums. Album hit the stores in 1978 and included hit single ‘Bounty Hunter‘ and The Allman Brothers Band cover ‘Dreams I’ll Never See‘. It eventually gained platinum status.
The group’s second album, ‘Flirtin’ With Disaster‘ came out 1979, broke into US top twenty and ended up selling more than two million copies. Albums title track was released as a single and with the help of radio play, it became Molly Hatchet’s biggest hit to date.
By the time the third album, 1980’s ‘Beatin’ The Odds‘, Danny Joe Browns diabetes took turn to worse and he was replaced by Jimmy Farrar. With radio hit ‘The Rambler‘ ‘Beatin’ The Odds‘ became another million selling album. Farrar was still on vocals on ‘Take No Prisoners‘, but soon after its release, decided to pursue a solo career. Danny Joe Brown rejoined Molly Hatchet in 1982 after dismantling his own The Danny Joe Brown Band, but after next albums, ‘No Guts…No Glory‘ (despite including their most brilliant song ‘Fall of the Peacemakers‘) and ‘The Deed is Done‘, both flopped, band kept low profile in rest of the eighties.
Molly Hatchet reunited in the mid-nineties, started touring again and released ‘Devil’s Canyon‘, their strongest album since ‘Flirtin’ With Disaster‘. Curiously enough, reunion line-up didn’t include any members from original Molly Hatchet. Bandleader Bobby Ingram was working under a license from the original members until he gained full rights to Molly Hatchet name in early 2000.
‘Silent Reign of Heroes‘ came out in -98 and ‘Kingdom of XII‘ in 2000. ‘Warriors of the Rainbow Bridge‘, followed in 2005. Same year original guitarist Dave Hlubek rejoined the band after playing years with Southern Rock Allstars and Skinny Molly. Original singer Danny Joe Brown lost his battle with long time illness the same year. Molly Hatchet returned stronger than ever in 2010 with the new album. You can read our Justice review in the album reviews section.
Molly Hatchet Discography:
1978 Molly Hatchet
1979 Flirtin’ With Disaster
1980 Beatin’ The Odds
1981 Take No Prisoners
1983 No Guts No Glory
1984 The Deed Is Done
1985 Double Trouble (Live)
1989 Lightning Strikes Twice
1991 Greatest Hits
1996 Devil’s Canyon
1998 Silent Reign Of Heroes
2000 Kingdom Of XII
2003 Locked And Loaded (Live)
2003 25th Anniversary; Best Of Re-Recorded
2005 Warriors Of The Rainbow Bridge
2005 Live In Hamburg
2007 Flirtin’ With Disaster Live
2008 Southern Rock Masters
2011 Greatest Hits
2011 Greatest Hits II
Official website: www.mollyhatchet.com