- GRAMMY Live
Formed in Athens, Ala., by high school friends Brittany Howard and bassist Zac Cockrell, the duo added Steve Johnson and guitarist Heath Fogg and dubbed themselves the Shakes in 2009. Influenced by artists spanning soul, blues and hard rock, the quartet began performing live with sets that featured covers of songs by AC/DC, James Brown, Led Zeppelin, and Otis Redding, among others.
Changing their name to Alabama Shakes as an ode to their home state, the band released a four-song self-titled EP in 2011, which garnered the attention of several record labels and media, including NPR who named them one of the best groups of 2011. Their debut album Boys & Girls was released in 2012 and features 11 tracks penned by Alabama Shakes, including the title track and "Hold On" which garnered a 55th GRAMMY nomination for Best Rock Performance and propelled the album to peak at No. 8 on the Billboard 200. Alabama Shakes is also nominated for Best New Artist at the 55th GRAMMY Awards.