Piccolo’s Early Bird Blues series at the Mad River Bar & Grille (32-B N. Market St.) kicked off last week with a variety of blues, roots-rock, and boogie from Juke Joint Johnny and Drew Baldwin, Brett “Hitman” Barnard, Jeff Beasley, Hector Qirko, and Market Street faves Cotton Blue. Situated in an old church building, Mad River is right in the middle of things along the East Bay Street/Market scene. Organized by local musician Gary “Shrimp City Slim” Erwin, the happy hour shows run in the main bar room from 5-7 p.m.
With gigs schedule every evening from this weekend through Fri. June 10, there’s plenty more blues and variety on the way. This evening (June 3), North Carolinian singer/guitarist Andy Coats hits the stage with twangy set. Boone, N.C.-based band the King Bees — bassist-songwriter/vocalist Penny Zamagni, guitarist/keyboardist Hound Dog Baskerville — perform on Sat. June 4. North Carolinian Matt Walsh joins the lineup this year with his ‘50s-era, Chess-style slide guitar.
The great “Blues Doctor” himself, Drink Small, a recent recipient of the S.C. Folk Heritage Award, a member of the S.C. Hall of Fame, will play several sets of gutsy and humorous originals and renditions — some of which are off his latest disc, Tryin’ to Survive at 75 — on Mon. June 6.
Upcoming performances in the series include local duo Chuck “The Cat” Morris & Silent Eddie Phillips, Savannah-based rock/surf/blues duo Acoustic, Grand-Strand-based blues-rock act My Buddy Todd, and Tennessee-based singer/guitarist Marshall Ballew.
Check out piccolospoleto.com and madrivercharleston.com for more.