Spotlighted gigs and recommended shows 


Operating quite under the radar for a few years now, this quirky, funky, indie-rock band (featuring Rigel Crockett, Antar Ellis, Joachim Kelly, Eric Curl and Louis Clausi) has become something of a familiar sight at house parties, public events in the Starland District and charity functions.

click to enlarge Soap
  • Soap

Having recently added a veteran lead guitarist (Jake Brown), they’re now stepping out and testing the waters of the club scene. This gig may prove their highest-profile booking to date. Their sets are roughly equal parts angular, exuberant originals and a grab-bag of recognizable —if seemingly unrelated— covers by artists like Lou Reed, Talking Heads, Al Green, Donovan, Ween and Michael Jackson. Listen & Learn: thisissoap.com. Fri., 11 pm, Locos (downtown) - 21+ only..

The 53rd Annual Beaufort Water Fest ***

It's been over a half century since this sleepy S.C. town has been celebrating it's close proximity to wetness. Over the years, that gathering has evolved into three-days of fun geared toward both locals and tourists alike. This year's event includes: a Crafts Market, Road Race, Children's Toad Fishing Tournament, Coast Guard Cutter Tours, a Badminton Competition, a Sailing Regatta, a teen dance and of course, a major C & W concert in the city's Waterfront Park.

Last year's show was rained out, so this time around, regional openers The Chuck Courtenay Band are back to take another stab at entertaining the masses with their blend of tried-and-true honky-tonk hits, southern rock anthems and popular dance numbers. This time around, their lineup includes bassist Tim Burke (who took home Best All-Around Local Musician in our latest Readers Poll), guitarist G.E. Perry, drummer Mike Bullock and Nashville-based pedal steel guitarist Tommy Butler, who's on a break from touring with George Jones' road show.

They'll warm up the crowd for a headlining set by neo-traditionalist country tunesmith Blake Shelton, who's earned four No. 1 Country Hits since he burst on the scene in 2001. His latest effort is a unique country spin on jazz vocalist Michael Bublé's single "Home". A limited number of $25 tickets are available for this ALL-AGES event. Listen & Learn: blakeshelton.com, myspace.com/chuckcourtenay. Info: bftwaterfestival.com. Sat., 8 pm, Beaufort Waterfront Park - ALL-AGES (no strollers allowed).

First Friday for Folk Music

This long-running monthly coffeehouse-style (family oriented, smoke and alcohol free) showcase of local, regional and national acoustic musicians sponsored by the Savannah Folk Music Society marks its 13th Anniversary by turning over a new leaf and shifting locations from downtown's Wesley Monumental United Methodist to new midtown digs. This installment is being held one week late to avoid competing with July 4th outings.

The lineup this time includes the passionate, "tightly-woven" protest tunes of touring duo Eli (singer) and Bill (fingerstyle guitarist) Perras. Rounding out the bill will be local old-time swing-blues harp and guitar duo Amburgey & Hanson, as well as noted Tybee-based singer/songwriter Jan Spillane, who divides her time between here and Nashville, and whose most recent indie CD of soulful, blues-influenced ballads and folk-pop features some of the area's finest players. Listen & Learn: bluesgotus.com, amburgeyandhanson.com, janspillane.com. Fri., 7:30 pm, First Presbyterian Church (520 Washington Ave.) - ALL-AGES.

The Hellblinki Sextet - CD Release Party ***

A typo led us to mistakenly list this eagerly anticipated return engagement by one of the Southeast's most theatrical and captivating underground bands as taking place last month. Truth is, they're bringing their "Pirate Cabaret" (a mesmerizing mélange of Brecht-ian melodrama, boozy, kitchen-sink horn jazz and punk-tinged outbursts) to Savannah this Friday night, and those who have heard tell of —but never witnessed— "Hell's House Band" would do well to experience what folks all along the East Coast are raving about.

Dark, moody and theatrical, the brainchild of frontman Andrew Benjamin is slowly but surely becoming a hot ticket on hipsters' horizons. They've enjoyed a fervent Savannah following for a few years now, so steel yourself for some Grand Guignol Rock & Roll. Listen & Learn: hellblinki.com. Fri., 11 pm, The Jinx.


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Jim Reed

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