The City of Greenville released their schedule last week for the 2012 Downtown Alive series which includes a handful of familiar faces and a new crop of talent. As a whole this line up has a little bit of everything ranging from jam bands like Four 14 to indie rock like Heyrocco. The eclectic line up is sure to bring out a wide range of music lovers throughout the year.
The Downtown Alive series is a great thing for the City of Greenville and is one of many events the city puts on to bring some of the nations best acts to Greenville. Over the last three years Greenville has offered free concerts from bands such as Dawes, Deer Tick, Sam Quinn, Langhorne Slim, J Roddy Walston, Kopecky Family Band, Futurebirds, Rogue Wave, Jason Isbell, Samantha Crain, and Truth and Salvage Company at their annual Fall for Greenville Festival and through Artisphere. The line up for this years Artisphere is set to come out soon and will include more of the regions best musical acts.
Downtown Alive 2012 Event Schedule
March 15: Kelly Jo Connect
Out of Greenville, SC, The Kelly Jo Connect are a fiery combination of soul, pop, rock, and Latin music. They draw inspiration from bands like The Pretenders, Mother’s Finest and Carlos Santana just to name a few. The KJC is a reverberating powerhouse, clocking in at six members whose backgrounds range from grunge to gospel. Kelly Jo leads the pack with soaring, smoky vocals as the band build intricate, solid jams. Individually, these musicians have worked beside living legends; together they are headlining festivals and shows throughout the Southeast area. Don’t miss these underground favorites. More
March 22: Four 14
Conceived in March of 2010, Four 14 blasted out of the gates with a wild widespread genre sound. The band quickly began gaining ground in the Greenville music scene through winning various battles of the bands. After participating and winning recording studio time, they cut their first live album “Homegrown” in sit and spin studios. They established themselves, among a select few bands from Greenville that are able to open for national touring acts at Greenville’s premier music venue, The Handlebar. They have opened for acts such as The Movement, Simplified, and Perpetual groove etc. Four 14 continues to move up the ranks with a pay your dues attitude and is a sure hit that will keep your legs grooving.
March 29: The Wheeler Brothers
Formed in Austin, Texas, Wheeler Brothers have quickly emerged as one of Austin’s most exciting up-and-coming bands. The five-piece independent folk-rock act combines the indie vibe of Austin with the twang of Texas folk. Brothers Nolan, Tyler and Patick met Danny Matthews at LSU where they spent much of their time picking guitars and swapping stories in the bar rooms of Baton Rouge and New Orleans. Once back in Austin their magnetic sound was completed by the addition of lifelong friend and singer/songwriter A.J. Molyneaux. Each member brings his own ideas and sounds to the group, with styles blending indie rock, blues and folk. Wheeler Brothers have been selling out major venues and climbing the charts of radio stations in “The live music capital of the world,” Austin, TX.
April 5: Frontier Sons
Frontier Sons blends aspects of Indie/Alternative rock that pulls you in from the very start with a modern twist on just straight forward rock n’ roll. Frontier Sons have a versatile style that hands you bold riffs with hooky melodies, that don’t let you forget their southern roots. More
April 12: Heyrocco
After touring throughout the southeast with acts such as Mutemath, Miniature Tigers, and Sequoyah; Heyrocco recorded some songs and stuff with all kinds of famous people including Eric Bass (Shinedown), Kanye West (Kanye West), Jeff and Eric (Dante’s Camaro). They plan to release their debut record, “Comfort”, sometime later this year. This heartfelt composition has had several months to marinate and displays maturity in songwriting as well as musicianship. With music being compared to artists such as The Killers, Coldplay, and Arcade Fire, this group of young musicians is welcoming in their rapidly growing fan-base one by one.”
April 19: Pinna
Pinna is bringing back the raw, classic energy of rock, mixing it with a healthy dose of funk and leaving no musical stone unturned. Drawing an eclectic mix of fans – suits to blue jeans, sorority girls to flower children, the young and the young at heart – the band creates an instant party on the floor for those who just like to groove or dance until they’re done. The set list always changes, so every show seems like a new, exhilarating musical experience with a group of your closest friends. More
April 26: The Piedmont Boys
The Piedmont Boys (TPB) originated in 2007 in Greenville SC when Kernersville, NC native Greg Payne and his old college pal Kenny Winslow from Levitown, NY formed a duo and started writing songs. They named the band after the Piedmont Region of South Carolina, which is at the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. Their influences from the old country outlaws such as Cash, Jennings, Jones, Paycheck, Williams, and Haggard didn’t take long until they acquired quite the following throughout the downtown Greenville bar scene. Growing in popularity over the years several members were added including Brian Kennedy (Greenville, SC) on drums, fiddler Matt Parks (Spartanburg, SC), bassist Ed Lemon (Barnwell, SC), and lead guitarist Adam Whitehead (Columbia, SC) making the band what it is today.
May 3: The Weathers
Ultima Nota was founded in 2009 by Tony Arreaza, a native of Venezuela who has participated as a musician and promoter in the Latin movement of the Southeast for over a decade. This five piece band, with members hailing from Venezuela, Mexico, and El Salvador, mixes the Latin traditional rhythms of salsa and cumbia with a touch of rock, Brazilian feeling and pop melodies. It’s a versatile group that can adapt to an event’s needs; from providing ambient music at a dinner banquet, such as boleros and Cuban son, to getting a crowd on its feet dancing to salsa, cumbia and merengue. Their repertoire includes songs from Buena Vista Social Club to Santana and from Old School Salsa to Michael Jackson with a tropical twist. More
May 10: Okra
Neo-Soul / R∓B
To experience the vitality of music, enjoy an art of sound in time that expresses ideas and emotions, and to feel the refined, redefined, and eclectic sounds of not only classic soul and fusion jazz, but also that of pop and neo-soul, is to know OKRA. Music that seamlessly and simultaneously honors the past, applauds the present, and continuously embarks on creating music for the soul is unequivocally, undoubtedly OKRA. Giving life back to music, OKRA brews comprehensive yet simplistic and pocketed yet edgy harmonics allowing for a great deal of resonance to add flavor to your ear. Not your typical Rhythm and Blues band, OKRA stretches across the board to give you “music for the soul,” proving that their music blends of the 70s, 80s, Pop, Jazz, and R&B (to name a few) are flavorful, articulate, and inviting. More
May 17: The Black Iron Gathering
The Black Iron Gathering is a band categorized under the “Party Grass” genre. The unit consists of Singer-Songwriter, guitarist, kazoo player, and Mandolin player Billy Ray, Singer-Songwriter guitarist Charles Funk, Singer-Songwriter and Banjo player Charlie McClinden, Upright Bassist and vocalist Bill Stevens, and Drum and Percussionist Justin Sims. The Black Iron Gathering writes high energy blue grass style power anthems, catchy ballads, and thick instrumental grooves that pulse for live show dancing and contagious sing-along.
May 24: The Cleghorn
Cleghorn is a father-son team that takes Texas southern rock and blends it with Celtic melodies. Both acoustic and rock. A combo that all age groups will enjoy. Original songwriting and high energy live shows are the bands most recognized strengths.
May 31: The Broadcast
With powerful and soulful melodies, poly rhythmic grooves and an uncanny ability to connect with listeners it’s no wonder The Broadcast has audiences across the country entranced. Originally formed in Brooklyn, NY in 2007, this young, six-piece soul infused rock band is known for their tight, high-energy performances that have vaulted them into the national spotlight.
June 7: Crowfield
Crowfield’s journey to the national stage has been accompanied by breakups and breakdowns, tempered by successes and letdowns, and defined by the act of giving a little more when there was nothing left to give. Indiana natives Tyler Mechem and Joe Giant formed the band that would come to be known as Crowfield when they relocated to Charleston, SC in 2005. In 2008, they caught the ear of acclaimed producer Rick Beato. Crowfield’s premier album “Goodbye, Goodnight, So Long Midwestern” (Ten Star Records) soon followed. Since the band’s creation, their music has evolved from a vintage American sound that reflected their Heartland roots, to a more modern and slightly edgy style of Rock and Roll—and everything in between.
June 14: Benton Blount
Growing up in the North Carolina mountains, Benton Blount never picked up a guitar or a microphone, much less played a tune. At age 18, his music pastor snuck a microphone up to his mouth and to his and everyone’s amazement, a beautiful voice was pouring out. Thus, sparking Benton’s passion for singing and writing songs. Benton has been the lead singer for a group called 7-miles since 1997.
June 21: Archer vs. Gunman
This talented trio of Carolina natives have a physical presence and lyrical poetry that successfully weave indie rock, southern soul, and Americana pop. Their performances seem effortless with songs that sound poppy and carefree upon first listen- but, closer inspection reveals darker, untold tales of love, loss, and life. Archer vs. Gunman provide us with a thinking man’s mountain music. More
June 28: Explorer’s Club
The Explorers Club are a Sunshine Psychedelic Pop Group from the coast of Charleston, South Carolina. The group blends skilled pop/rock arrangements with 4 part vocal harmonies. They draw their influences from the classic pop vocals of the Beach Boys and the Association combined with the rock and roll arrangements of Phil Spector, Chuck Berry, The Beatles, The Zombies and The Byrds. The Explorers Club are led by Jason Brewer’s artful pop arrangements and complex vocal harmonies which are filled out by James Faust, Wally Reddington, and David Ellis. Filling out the instrumental sound of the Explorers Club with their organ and drum work respectively are Stefan Rogenmoser and Neil Thomas.
July 5: Eric Scott Band
Straight out of the foothills in Anderson, SC comes The Eric Scott Band with a rowdy, rockin’ country sound that has been turning heads and winning hearts since 2008. These boys have been blazing through the Southeast music scene with a live show that is nothing short of explosive. Eric Scott brings a voice, look and swagger that has fans falling in love with him instantly. And then they meet him only to find out how authentic and humble he is to be doing what he loves for so many people each night. And with him is a group of musicians who have been playing various instruments their whole life.
July 12: The Advice
The Advice formed in early 2003, but didn’t make their national introduction to the music world until 2010, with the independent release of their single “Your Love Sets Me Free”. The single hit the Billboard Charts in the summer of 2010, leading to the band signing with InPop Records. InPop’s roster also includes The Newsboys, Mat Kearney, Jimmy Needham and others.
July 19: Kemp Ridley
Barely a year old, the enthusiastic kemp ridley seems to already be finding its way into something special. Fronted by the rich, emotive voice of Cayla Fralick, the fivesome rides earnest and genial melodies — not too far removed from the orch-pop of Manchester Orchestra or from Paramore’s tempered alt-rock. But listen to a song like “Small and Quiet,” as the guitars build slowly, surely behind Fralick’s whispered refrain; here’s where shades of later-Superchunk come in, hinting coyly at dissonance, and building tension that moves the songs well beyond the norm. This is clearly a band schooled in dynamics, from post-rock panorama to solo-act insularity.
July 26: Reggaeinfinity
ReggaeInfinity plays authentic Roots Reggae! Though based in Columbia, SC, the band members hail from various Caribbean Islands plus the US. Original, positive music written by Ras B along with occasional covers keeps everyone feeling, dancing and listening to the positive vibes. With a firm spiritual foundation, these talented musicians and singers are dedicated to sharing the message of Roots Reggae and believe strongly in advancing equality, brotherhood and universal love. They have shared the stage with many international acts including Haile Maskel, Zema, Culture, Burning Spear, Yellowman, The Wailers, The Meditations, Morgan Heritage, Midnite, Everton Blender, Soldiers of Jah Army, Inner Visions, Bambu Station and Wayne Wonder. More
August 2: Jason and the Haymakers
In an industry filled with every label and genre known to man, Jason & The Haymakers are a true, original American Country band. Whether you call it Americana, Roots Rock or Rock ‘N’ Roll, they simply get it done. Filled with influences across the board, the story filled, guitar infused melodies, echo the life and experiences of front man Jason Bertrand. Throw in a little rowdiness of the hardest working band around….The Haymakers, along with their loyal fans and you’ve got yourself some music you just have to experience live.
August 9: Death of Paris
Death of Paris began in 2009 when co-founders Jayna Doyle and Blake Arambula began writing together, but since welcoming guitarist Patrick Beardsley, bassist Patrick North and drummer Bryan Bass into the fold in late 2010, the band has made the process of touring and promoting the band a full-time job. Riding high on their debut album, which was recorded in Los Angeles, CA at Killingsworth Recording Company with producer David Baker, the band took 2011 head on, spending nearly a month on the road in January.
August 16: Retro Vertigo
Partygoers find this explosive, high-energy cover-band irresistible when they start playing favorites from the 1980’s and more. RetroVertigo taps into its member’s history of quality musicianship and showmanship to bring the most colorful music from the 80’s back to life.
August 23: Everlasting Earle