"E.E. Lawson – he got him a plan." So goes the 1970s rock song of the same name by the Ozark Mountain Daredevils.
Now, the Daredevils have a plan to once again capitalize on the E.E. Lawson name – this time with spirits.
The Springfield band announced its EE Lawson Distillery company entered a deal with Major Brands to expand its gin brand statewide, according to a news release.
Dubbed Ozark Dry Gin, the product has sold nearly 5,000 bottles since EE Lawson Distillery was formed last year, said Daredevils Manager Dwight Glenn. He said the gin is made in partnership with Springfield Brewing Co., which manufactures and distills the alcoholic beverage.
"We are looking forward to the distribution partnership with Major Brands to organically grow our market reach throughout southwest Missouri and eventually throughout the entire state of Missouri," Glenn said via email.
Steve Drewry, general manager for St. Louis-based Major Brands’ Springfield operation, said the distribution deal first would focus on southwest Missouri for the rest of 2020. Next year, in conjunction with the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Daredevils, the gin is slated to be distributed statewide, starting in cities such as Kansas City and St. Louis, Drewry said.
Glenn said EE Lawson Distillery also is working to introduce a new spirit – most likely a rye whiskey – in 2021. Ozark Dry Gin is currently its sole product.
In the release, Daredevils co-founder John Dillon described the origin of the gin idea dating back to the band's heyday.
"While in London recording our first album, we discovered the subtle pleasures of English gin," he said in the release. "Learning that it is the botanicals that give gin its unique taste and sense of place, we were intrigued by the possibility of a spirit that pays homage to the colorful history and origins of gin, as well of our own dreams for this time-proved elixir."
Read profiles of this year's honorees.
Aaron York, general superintendent of Donco 3 Construction, describes what he sees in the construction job market in Springfield in 2021. Rachel York is the co-owner of Donco3 Construction.
Jim Meinsen gives his advice for finding new clients as the owner of a new or existing business. Jim and Debbie Meinsen own TCI Graphics, and recently celebrated 50 years in business.
Jeramey and Julia Henson discuss the reason they and HM Dentworks co-owner Chris McWhirter started the HM Dentworks Academy. With the job demands of their field taking them across the country, all three felt that they needed a plan for the future.
Caleb Scott, owner and coach of the Queen City Insane Asylum, says the name for the team was chosen lightheartedly. He said the name also catches people's attention.
Barak Hill gives advice based on what he learned from the COVID-19 pandemic and how it affected his business. He says we should all have a backup plan ready to use.
Sandy Higgins, owner of the Crackerjack Shack, recommends the book "The E-Myth Mastery" by Michael E Gerber. She says it changed the course of how she runs her business.
Aaron York describes the work culture he tries to foster at Donco3 and why he attributes to it a part of Donco3's success. Rachel York is a co-owner of Donco3 and Aaron is the General Superintendent.
Hollie Elliott, executive director of the Dallas County Economic Development Group, explains how local schools factor into business decisions and affect a local community.
Rachel Barks, owner of Artistree Pottery, says an important lesson she learned was not to over-expand and to do her research before hand. She gives examples from her experience as a startup business owner.
Jim and Debbie Meinsen own TCI Graphics, and are now celebrating 50 years of business. Jim Meinsen takes some time to explain his philosophy on debt, and how to stay out of it.