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  • Writer's pictureJay Hicks

Grandaddy Mimm's & Redneck Chemistry

Updated: Aug 26, 2021

Kurt from Clearwater, FL.

A meeting with Tommy Townsend, lead singer for the Waylon Jennings Band!

Tommy Townsend, Nashville recording artist was discovered and first recorded by Waylon Jennings and his bass guitarist Jerry "Jigger" Bridges. Later, after Waylon's passing, Tommy was asked to travel as lead guitarist and singer for the Waylon Jennings Band. I crossed paths with Tommy in Blairsville, in Northern Georgia.

Tommy Townsend with Whiskey Barrel Telecaster

While living in Nashville and making music with Townsend O'Donnell and Waylon Jennings Bands, Tommy decided to begin the complicated process of legally producing prohibition whiskey in Blairsville, once the liquor laws of the county were changed in 2016.

Grandaddy Mimm, AKA Jack McClure (January 25, 1914 - June 26, 1969), was nicknamed "Mimm" by his grandchildren. In addition to being Tommy Townsends grandfather, Jack McClure was an American Appalachian moonshiner and a local philanthropist from Young Harris, Georgia.

Many folks in this part of the state remember Jack McClure's white lighting and his charitable demeanor. Jack was always willing to help those in need. He even helped fund a few notable Georgia politicians of his time like Zell Miller. Tommy, along with a few others maintained the secret family recipe for the still revered Grandaddy Mimm's corn whiskey!

"Jack McClure was the John Wayne of our section. A bear like man who weighed about 250 pounds, he wore a Stetson hat, and his shirt was always, even in winter, unbuttoned with a mat of reddish-gray hair exposed. He was loved, hated, respected, and feared, depending upon the experience one had had with him." - Gov. Zell Miller on Jack McClure.
Tommy and Michael

Tommy offered a sneak peak of the distillery, where I met Grandaddy Mimm's Production Manager, Michael Kimsey who was busy performing his "Redneck Chemistry". The small batch distillery is now distributing a Blackberry, Blueberry, Peach, Cherry Cobbler and Apple Brown Betty flavored moonshine and the Mule Kickin’ 140 Proof corn whiskey to different stores in Georgia, Florida, Tennessee and Arizona. Each has a unique flavor that can be mixed or enjoyed over ice. Grandaddy Mimm's also offers there own brand of Owltown Vodka in Original, Citrus, & Raspberry Guava flavors.

Grandaddy Mimm's is open! You can enjoy a mixed drink or a little white lightning straight up, at the bar located in front of the distillery on 112 Wellborn Street Blairsville, Georgia. Tommy and his crew are veteran friendly and have created their own brand of hand sanitizer, helping many folks during the Covid season. So if you get a chance, stop in and say hello to the crew next time you are passing through North Georgia. You won't be sorry as Tommy and the crew insure the hospitality is great and the atmosphere is warm. If you can't make it Blairsville and your state allows for shipping, you can arrange to taste some of Granddady Mimm's legal prohibition whiskey at the following sites

Don't forget to take a look at the distilleries website:

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