By the grace of God, it’s time to get back to the music! When I last left you we just finished the second weekend of September and those along the coast of North and South Carolina started planning and then bracing for the devastating effects of Hurricane Florence. About this time a month ago she was barreling toward us and thankfully downgrading on her approach. After watching the news on Michael just last night, I am ever so grateful for the fact that Florence weakened her wrath unto us.
Though I have not been able to bring you a music blog, rest assured, I have been keeping the beats and am glad to be back sharing the news! I am here to assure you that, although the river is not always graceful and pretty… we as a community, however, are fierce and strong. With Florence now in our wake, we found out we are #NewBernStrong!
Let’s celebrate by recapping the music news that we missed!
Bryan Mayer was the musical guest for The Fifth Annual Barn Bash. This event was the best yet for Promise Place, the non-profit organization who has been helping the community heal from sexual assault and abuse for decades. Located in New Bern, Promise Place serves Jones, Pamlico and Craven Counties. On Saturday, September 8, 2018, the Annual Fund Raiser took place on the Batten Farm. It offers guests and sponsors, a good meal, adult beverages, desserts for auction, live entertainment, raffles and a live auction all in the spirit of raising money for the non-profit that works hard in healing our community.
I would meet Bryan Mayer again at the month’s end, when he was taking part in a Hurricane Relief Benefit on Sunday, September 30, 2018, at the Tackle Box Tavern in Atlantic Beach. This event offered relief to those along the Crystal Coast and Carteret County. The entire area has been devastated and is rebuilding from the wrath of Florence. There are many events in the works to bring aid and assist with relief. As we get back to the music coverage more regularly, I look forward to talking about events that help rebuild our area by way of music.
On this particular Sunday Funday, Bryan McCoury, Bryan Mayer and Davy Williamson offered music to those in attendance. There was a $5.00 donation paid at entry and raffles throughout the night. All the money raised went to rebuilding the local Atlantic Beach Community.
The first benefit I attended was actually in New Bern, on Friday, September 22, 2018, the community gathered for music, food, fellowship, and goodwill toward each other. We joined together for the purpose of bringing aid to the hard-hit area of New Bern, NC. Together we gathered at the City stage, 901 Pollock Street, not far from where our community has been most devastated. But the goodwill and kindness won’t be silenced in this town and the music will play on!
Opening the night was Caroline Tanner who was joined by her daughter Kira Vetters. Following their 30 minute set, Adam Hill offered another acoustic set under the tent. After the sun went down on a beautiful day, we saw our community come together on the spot to raise nearly $2600 in funds, offered food to nearly 500 hungry people and distribute cleaning supplies and other donated goods to people in need throughout the night.
It was a beautiful night, that was well orchestrated by the staples in our music community. Folks Journal’s staff were some of the first sets of boots on the ground after the storm and secured storage units, housing, lined up volunteers and did so much more in the first few weeks following the storm. Giving of themselves, even after they suffered major losses themselves.
Much is true of the cooks and music makers, promoters and more. We saw gathering to help the community. It was quite beautiful to watch the essence of God working in all of us! On stage inside the club were local talents. Big Jim Kohler Blues Band offered the opening set inside and The Hot Buttered Grits closed out the fun night of music and community celebration.
The reality of life in New Bern now is, that we talk about life as we know it after Florence. We are all walking about looking for the beats and striving to find our new normal. As for the bands that played, both had players that lost a lot in the flood. Some lost it all while others are recovering from only a few feet of surge. People all around us are recovering from a loss of work and loss of home. Many have lost it all, from cars, houses, boats, and businesses. This is a community on the mend like never before. But thanks to our awesome first responders, military personnel, volunteers and other trained specialists, as well as our small businesses and music community, we healing daily.
The stories of this storm are enough to flood any soul with emotion. Big Jim and Kathleen Kohler lost their home to Irene in 2011. After 5 years of waiting for the process, they moved into their raised house and evacuated when Florence came calling. After all, things were assessed the family returned to learned they lost the contents of their garage, and all of their floors need to be replaced. Once again the heartache and the blues meet the Kohlers at River Bend. They take it with a smile and play the blues for others.
Vocalist, guitarist, and mandolin jammer for the Hot Buttered Grits, Seth Smith, and his family lost their house to the rage of Florence. Grits drummer Zack Meadows also saw water rise in his home a few feet, “Just enough to make a mess, ya know.” he said when we spoke! “We are blessed, when you hear how people have lost it all, it’s truly sad.”
Local DJ on the scene and local music promoter Parker Millar and his girlfriend lost their vehicles on the return home from Asheville. They got caught in a flash flood on the way home and lost most of the things they were trying to save during the evacuation, as well as their cars. Luckily first responders arrived on sight to rescue the pair. Millar recently started work with our local news station and radio outfit that was flooded during Florence. When I tell you that the people we know are hurting, I promise you it is not an exaggeration. Some days there are no words for the exhaustion and sadness.
Big hearts like Grant Golden, Bailey Evans, Meg Wetherington, Leigh-Anne Sullivan, Tank Wetherington, Joshua Storts, Chris Strange, Patrick Edwards, Nichole Kirch and many many more are true examples of why this city has a heartbeat big enough for the world to feel…I applaud and thank you all. I look forward to working with all of you on many more benefits in the days ahead as we rebuild.
Throughout the weeks we will catch up with the music makers and share the stories. We will take part in celebrations of recovery and healing, and we will raise funds with the fun of music and fellowship. Thank you for still being here and dancing with me! I have missed you much!
Tonight the city of New Bern prepares for MumFest 2018. The Swiss Bear Foundation welcomes WRNS FM and country act DAN & SHAY who will close out the night on stage at Lawson Creek Park. Gates open today at 4:30 pm. Tickets are $30.00 at the gate. The good news is that proceeds for this event go to support relief efforts in our community. Another offering of brightness, this means that one more park is opening for use and one more big event is on the way to return to our area. To check out all of the music be sure to visit the website for details.
Throughout the weekend you can enjoy great live music in town, as you take a break from the cleanup and support local businesses and enjoy good food and fine beer while dancing to live music
Tonight at BrUtopia, 1201 Highway 70 East, New Bern, NC. On tap, they will be featuring the tunes of Sam Lewis for your Friday night entertainment. The music is free, the beer is fresh and the food truck is Mari Hella Fat Food Truck. They will arrive on site at 5 pm to serve the delicious food. Music is offered from 7-10 pm. Stop by this weekend to show your support for local business, local beer and local music! Food is served from 5 until 10 pm. Music is offered from 7-10 pm. Tomorrow night will be Kristie Lynn, serving up the sounds and Nest Cafe dishing out the goods.
Hopping and bopping about town, we stop at The Thirst Bruin Craft Beer and Wine Store, 224 Middle St. and find the cold draft, new beer and acoustic jams of Brian Burke. Live music is free and is offered from 8-10:30 pm.
Cruising around the corner, The Brown Pelican, 411 Broad St., offers the music of two area artist tonight! Come out and unwind while enjoying the music of Buck Loy and Bruce Lynch offering tunes from 7-10 pm. On Saturday night, you are invited back to rock with Gary Dudley and the Maxxtones, offering the classic rock beats you know and love from 8-11 pm.
New Bern’s newest venue City Stage offers a night of Paul Simon Music, with singer John Van Dyke and friends they will present the music of popular singer-songwriter Paul Simon. Spanning the decades from the early Art Garfunkel collaborations, to the memorable classics of his solo career. If you are a fan of Paul Simon’s music, you won’t want to miss this special encore concert. Music starts at 7:30 pm. Tickets are $15.00. On Saturday night, the New Bern based Caffeinated Soul Boogie will be offering the sounds from 8-11 pm. Tickets are $7.00.
The City Stage is located at 901 B Pollock St, New Bern, NC. They are a private club. Sign up and become a member for $1.00.
Sadly the waterfront took a hard hit with the fierce winds and flood surge of Florence. They were not able to rebound in enough in time to welcome their Annual Fall event, The NC Seafood Festival. It is understandable when you consider the amount of damage sustained by many businesses which are still out of commission and on the mend.
When you are ready for a break please check out the local scene and support the businesses that are still open and serving the community.
Checking things out along the Crystal Coast, Off the Hook is open for business. The restaurant’s owner, chef and manager Charlie Weatherby wants you to know, that he has a banquet room to host your private affair. If you had plans to host an event and the venue is rebuilding, call Off the Hook to schedule an appointment to book your affair. You can enjoy music each Saturday from 10 pm until closing. You are encouraged to come out early and enjoy the good food prepared to order. The menu is always pleasing and the entertainment is always fun and rocking. Off the Hook is located at 105 S 7th St., Morehead City, NC. For more info, call (252) 499-9150.
The Cru Bar and Wine Store/ Beaufort Coffee Shop has been back in action since a week following Florence. Checking out their music schedule starting with tonight, will offer Davis Lott & The Mad Fiddler this talented duo will be rocking the stage from 8:30-11:30 pm. Saturday night offers the music of Dick Knight with sounds being served from 8-11 pm. The show is free and tips are encouraged. Looking ahead, the host Open Mic Night with Tiffany Elaine and Friends on the First and Third Tuesday of each month, Come out this week and sing your new song and jam. Sign up starting at 7 pm and music will be playing from 8-11 pm. Giving you a sneak peek at next week, music sensation Emily Musilino will be rocking the stage on Friday, October 19 from 9 pm til 1 am. Cru Bar is located at 120 Turner St., Beaufort, NC. Need more info, call (252) 728-3066.
The Royal James Cafe not only serves up the best burgers in town, but they also offer live music each weekend. Tonight you can enjoy the sounds of the talented duo from the north, Rob Lightner and Nathan Shaffer. If you like country and southern rock, they will groove you right! Music plays 9 pm til midnight!
Checking things out around the rest of the region, I ask my Facebook followers each week where we can go to hear them play. This is what they said this week
Here are all the great music options for you on Facebook this week. Check out all of the events here and express interest in the ones you like.
Please go out and support live music tonight! Always call the club in advance to confirm what you read here is true. Many times events change without anyone updating the Facebook event created.
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I appreciate my readers, the musicians and the venues who all do a part in keeping live music alive! Give us a like and tell your friends by sharing this page on your social media pages. To the many bands and clubs, thanks for keeping me informed!
Take kindness with you today, tip those that serve you and the music makers that rock you and hug people often and share the love. Don’t forget life is short and could end in a moment. Make sure you take time to enjoy the dance. Please party safely people! We love having you here with us! Rely on your sober friends, call a cab or sign up to Uber around!
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