There is a song on Alabama Shakes' debut album "Boys & Girls" that's titled, "Going To The Party." "(Lead singer) Brittany (Howard) wrote that song about sneaking out of her house and coming to see my old band play at a house party," guitarist Heath Fogg told the Huntsville Times. "I love that song because I think everyone knows that feeling. It's Friday night, you're on your way to a party and there are so many possibilities."
It was Fogg who asked The Shakes, which at the time consisted of Howard, bassist Zac Cockrell and drummer Steve Johnson, to open for his band. They agreed, but only if Fogg performed with them. That show went well, and a while later Fogg became The Shakes full-time guitarist.
Since the name "Shakes" was already taken, the group, being from Athens, AL decided to rechristen themselves the Alabama Shakes.
A four-song self-titled EP dropped in '11 which led to their inclusion on MTV's list of 11 Artists To Watch In 2012. Eventually, the Alabama Shakes were signed to ATO Records (Rough Trade Records in the U.K.).
Keeping the MTV connection, the band was nominated for an mtvU Woodie for "best live performance" but lost to Rapper Mac Miller. Later, Jack White (White Stripes) tapped Alabama Shakes for a series of singles for his Third Man Records. Then there was a tour opening for White.
The band's debut full-length album, "Boys & Girls," was streamed live on April Fool's Day, '12 - nine days before the CD dropped.
The set was awarded Gold Record status by the RIAA for sales of over 500,000 in the U.S.
"Sound & Color," the Alabama Shakes sophomore album, dropped in '15.
Next, Howard stepped out with a set of Nashville musicians for Thunderbitch. The Garage Rock outfit's self-title album came out later in the year.
In early '16, the music establishment heaped accolades on Alabama Shakes. They took home four Grammys; Best Rock Song and Best Rock Performance for "Don't Wanna Fight," which they played during the ceremony, plus Best Alternative Music Album and Best Engineered Album (Non-classical) for "Sound & Color."
2012 Boys & Girls
2015 Sound & Color
Alabama Shakes could have been an opening act for Creedence Clearwater Revival. Gospel and Swamp Rock R&B are intertwined.
Brittany Howard Album: