Thursday, June 1, 2017

Live Music: Grass in the Hall; Magic City Hippies; The Classics; Marcus King Band

Great live music to check out this week

Posted by Heath Ellison, Vincent Harris and Graham Crolley on Thu, Jun 1, 2017 at 2:54 PM

click to enlarge Savage Souls - JONATHAN BONCEK
  • Jonathan Boncek
  • Savage Souls

HIP-HOP | The Classics
Luis Skye, DJ Flip, Damn Skippy, Sheed Staggs, Apollo Valdez, Savage Souls, Cole Connor
Sat. Jun. 3
9 p.m.
$10
Pour House

Hey, guys, did you hear? Luis Skye's parents are out of town and he's having a house party-themed show. As all rap historians can guess, the evening will be inspired by the 1990 film House Party with Kid 'N Play. Most of the night's soundtrack will come from the late '80s and early '90s, when the Kid 'N Play Kickstep was innovative, instead of just awesome. "We want to have more crowd participation," says Skye. "We want to make it 'party-style,' where people are dancing and having a good time." In typical fashion, Skye's inviting a slew of local rappers to perform their favorite old-school tunes from artists like Snoop, KRS-One, and Afrika Bambaataa, but this classics show will see more early '90s R&B creep into the fold. Skye is trying to make this just as much of a dance party as it is a hip-hop concert, with standard artists like Warren G getting some speaker time. "It's going to be a different styled show," he says. Skye will also be behind the turntable for the second half of the evening. Another new addition will be rappers Apollo Valdez and Cole Connor, who have both seen critical success in Charleston and Columbia, respectively. Sheed Staggs is back from Soda City, and all performers — including Charleston faves DJ Flip, Damn Skippy, and Savage Souls — will perform original tracks alongside the '90s R&B and rap covers. —Heath Ellison SATURDAY

click to enlarge MATT WIGNALL
  • Matt Wignall

BLUES-ROCK | The Marcus King Band
Fri. June 2
9 p.m.
$15-$17
Music Farm

Think about all of the times you saw Stevie Ray Vaughan playing a transcendent, mind-boggling solo; he almost always had his eyes closed, staring skyward, simply letting the genius flow through his fingers. It's hard not to think about those moments when you watch Greenville's 21-year-old phenom Marcus King play guitar. He's an absolute master of tone, control, and speed, bringing to mind Warren Haynes, Eric Clapton, and Vaughan, sometimes within the same solo. He's also got the voice of a soul singer three decades older, and the Marcus King Band (MKB) is one of the most talented, versatile bands in the business. A six-piece, old-school R&B revue-style band, complete with miles-deep Hammond B-3 organ and a sizzling horn section, King's is a truly smokin' unit. If you need proof, just check out their new self-titled album with lean-and-mean production by Haynes himself and a set of songs that ranges from roadhouse rock to psychedelic exploration. The MKB is, as Vaughan himself might have said, the real deal. —Vincent Harris FRIDAY

click to enlarge KARSON PHOTOGRAPHY
  • Karson Photography

BLUEGRASS | Grass In The Hall: A Night Of Local Bluegrass
w/ The Bluestone Ramblers, River Boy, Southern Flavor Bluegrass
Thurs. June 1
7:30 p.m.
$17-$22
Charleston Music Hall

The kickoff for the third-annual Grass in the Hall series is about as perfect an example of bluegrass tradition as one could imagine. A mix of young players and seasoned veterans, the Bluestone Ramblers were initially formed by guitarist Sandy Nivens and mandolin player Keith McCullough in 2006. They can shoot off the expected instrumental fireworks on acoustic guitar, mandolin, and, especially, Gary Payne's dobro, but the band's real power comes in its quieter moments. They're an intuitive group of players who can play with a sense of restraint, lending a gentle feel to their ballads. The Ramblers are also not quite as solo-happy as many bluegrass ensembles can be, often preferring to take on a song's ups and downs as a group. Occasionally, fiddle player Derek Deakins, Nivens, or Payne will take flight from the group playing, but even the solos are lyrical, melodic, and focused more on the song than on showing off. —Vincent Harris THURSDAY

click to enlarge Magic City Hippies - PROVIDED
  • Provided
  • Magic City Hippies

INDIE FUNK | Magic City Hippies
w/ Beach Tiger
Tues. June 6
9 p.m.
$5/adv., $8/door
Pour House

It's easy to see the tropical appeal of Miami's Magic City Hippies when you put on their hit song "Fanfare." With sampled references to "reefer madness," sunnily intoxicating instrumentation, and an ultra-smooth vocal delivery, it's almost as if Beck and Gorillaz had a funk baby. The song topped the Spotify Global Viral Top 50 charts in 2015 and garnered two-million streams. The group started with frontman Robby Hunter playing hip-hop covers and originals on the streets outside of Miami bars before evolving into the beachy, viral hitmakers they are today, completed by other members Pat Howard and John Coughlin. The band describes their sound as an amalgamation of funk, rock, hip-hop, soul, and Latin. "Generally, we are just trying to create music that we would want to listen to," the band says. "Usually that means it has to be danceable, or it has to have some specific character or texture." That being said, Magic City Hippies doesn't come across as some shallow, party-for-the-sake-of-partying type of group. "Most of the songs are stories," the band notes. "Whether the message is growing up, getting over love lost, or just tropical hedonism, the one element they all have in common is a certain Truth ... That we should do our best to live this life to the fullest ... We'd love to think that our music empowers people and inspires them to live life well." Local synth-pop rockers Beach Tiger will support Magic City Hippies for a night of dance-worthy vibes. —Graham Crolley TUESDAY


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