Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

JJ GREY, MOFRO ARE 'FRONT AND CENTER'; Jacksonville Musician's Special Will Be Shown Saturday, Jan. 4, on PBS

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

JJ GREY, MOFRO ARE 'FRONT AND CENTER'; Jacksonville Musician's Special Will Be Shown Saturday, Jan. 4, on PBS

Article excerpt

Byline: Tom Szaroleta

JJ Grey and his band, Mofro, have put out seven albums, shared the stage with some of the biggest acts in music and have a PBS special scheduled to air next week.

But during a phone interview this month from his Jacksonville home, with his wife hammering away on a renovation project in the background, Grey said he "ain't no big rock star" and wouldn't care to be one.

"I definitely had dreams always of playing to lots of people, but I've never cared really about all of the other stuff, all the myth," Grey said. "To be honest with you, I've been around a lot of people who are rock stars and they don't even live like rock stars."

Grey, who grew up in the Whitehouse area of Jacksonville and attended Ed White High School, will play a New Year's Eve set at the Florida Theatre with Gregg Allman. Grey said the show has been in the works for a while - his agent had "first hold" on the venue when Allman's people inquired about playing that night. "His agent and my agent and the promoter at the Florida Theatre said aewhy don't we all do it together?'"

So Grey and Mofro, who traditionally on or around New Year's Eve in Jacksonville, will take the stage around 9 p.m. and play a full set. Allman - who will be the subject of an all-star tribute in Atlanta next month that includes performances by Vince Gill, Dr. John, Jackson Brown, Martina McBride, Eric Church, Natalie Cole, Widespread Panic and others - will take the stage around 11 p.m. and play into the new year. And you never know if both bands may end up on stage jamming together before the night is through, Grey said.

"It's going to be an all-night affair, that's for sure," he said.

Mofro's lineup has been pretty fluid over the years, with players coming and going but has been fairly stable since longtime guitarist Daryl Hance "began a hiatus from Mofro" in 2010, according to the band's website.

"It's probably been the longest consistent lineup so far and I hope to keep it that way," Grey said. …

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