When I signed up for a blog in 2015, I had no idea what would become of my investment. And for the first year, it actually looked like the investment was more a waste of money. I used this site periodically as a space to heal from a sudden and scary divorce. It was my cathartic site, where I drowned out the pain and as time marched on and my life improved. I suddenly found myself traipsing through my past life and I reflected on the things that once made me happy. Music is my life’s true love. Music is my best friend. When I am alone and it is my companion through lonely days and nights. I have healed my battered soul with many a blues numbers.
At the turn of 2016, I was gathering with friends weekly for dinner. We all met midweek for a quick nosh, a few laughs and some cold beers. We all like live music, so during our dinner gatherings we would plan our weekends and discuss or at least try to discuss who was playing where and attempted make a plan. After a few weeks of people going around the table unsure of what was happening, I started prepping for our dinners by searching out live music options before supper time.
After my close-knit gathering of friends seemed to respond to my homework, I reflected more on my life once lived and started sharing who was playing where on Fridays and Saturdays, via Facebook. As time unfolded and as more people responded, the time came to recommit to buying this blog service again. Since then, this blog has been nothing but a gateway for live local music being played in North Carolina, with a specific focus on the downeast region, since that is where yours truly resides.
Each week I research social media sites to see where people are playing, so that I can build a reputable, readable article that will bring musicians and music lovers together. My greatest task has been getting people to send me their schedule. I won’t beg anyone to promote them for free. I end each week with an email address and ask people in clear and concise terms what they should send to me.
Though I ask for emails only a handful arrive each month. There are few bands that utilize this old fashion concept known as a press release. I don’t think that was a wise move, to fall out of touch with your media sources, just because social media became a craze. There is good content in press releases that social media events often miss. Press releases are thorough and include details like ticket price and time of show. Most Facebook events contain few details and often are completely and entirely wrong.
Nonetheless, I report what I find, I search websites, I look for ticket sale links. I check and recheck links and try to deliver a quality piece each week, that inspire people going out to support live, local music. After a quick search myself, I find we have a bopping and hopping music scene throughout North Carolina. I love taking in five to seven bands in one night and when you hit a couple of towns, in a night that is easy to do.
Just where I live alone, there are at least a handful of venues offering live music each Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. When you add in events like open mic nights and other offerings throughout the week, there is always local music news to talk about. I find that to be more refreshing than regular news, so I keep the focus on the artist and the venues offering an open space for them to display their craft. Life is full of hardships, bad news and things we can’t change. I am here to remind people, that it is short and we need to take the time to enjoy it as much as possible and always take time to dance. Tomorrow is not promised, so if you go out tonight, applaud the band, shake it down some and tip the music makers that make you happy! They work hard each weekend when we are off so let’s celebrate their music and our free time.
In the next chapter of this blog I will be committed to writing and publishing three times weekly starting tomorrow. This will be my last Friday post until it comes time to publish daily. I would like to bring you music news each Thursday, Saturday and Monday. I will cover the events I see with my “On The Scene” segments. I will highlight gigs in town and around the area and state. Thursday you will find the schedule for Thursday and Friday and on Saturday you will be in the know about shows for Saturday and Sunday. While Monday’s installment will offer a spot for Open Mic Madness and a rundown of the region.
I am learning how to build ads and display them on the page. I am investigating how to download a calendar of events and have unleashed new codes this week, that I hope to reveal as soon as next week. All in all it has been an incredibly inspiring journey of bringing music and people together for the sake of good times and dancing. I love taking pictures and telling the stories of the music I get to hear. I always hopes it moves you enough to head out the door to see what I am seeing and sharing each week.
Music makers are underpaid and underappreciated for the income they can generate for businesses, in comparison to what they are paid. They need promotional tools and I noted that was something severely lacking in my area. Though the idea of publishing a weekly rag mag to put in racks at bars, taverns and restaurants is worthy of exploration, I am more committed to learning the ropes of creating an app for what I wish to do all in all. I feel that is more the trend and way of the world anyway. So for me it is easy to lock myself away so to bring you the details of the music I see. That has generated enough interest that now people look for it and rely on it…especially where I live.
For ten out of the twelve month of the year, they host a monthly open mic night on the last Saturday of each month at the Trent River Coffee Company, located at 208 raven St., New Bern, NC. This is a popular gathering that is always full with talent and a room full of inspiring and creative people eager to play and share their music. I made it by last week for the final event of 2017, making it my fourth open mic showing since starting this blog. Hosted by Mathew Kerlin, this event takes place on the last Saturday of the month between January and October, They take off November and December due to the Holidays. All levels are welcome to sit in, Sign up starts at 6 pm and music starts at 6:30 pm. They jam til 9 pm and they always have fun and share in laughter and applause.
Joe Baes Project took part in a night of Halloween fun at BrUtopia last weekend. Many came out to rock with Baes and the boys. The band offers a great mix of acoustic and electric rock numbers which became popular in the 90’s and even more current. For those who have yet to catch this act, mark your calendar for Sunday, November 19, 2017 when they rock on the patio at Circa 1810 Bar & Restaurant , 221 S Front St., New Bern, NC. Harvey Mansion offers live music each Thursday thru Sunday. Come out and enjoy the live music and patio vibe tonight.
I had the pleasure of listening to Vicki Fox as she shared her jams outside on the deck at The Dockside Restaurant on the Beaufort Waterfront. They offer live music each night on last week when I strolled by I found this talented singer who will be returning to town this weekend for a performance tomorrow night at The Royal James Cafe located at 117 Turner St., Beaufort, NC Music starts at 9 pm and the show is Free, but feel free to tip the music maker and applaud her efforts.
For my next stop I headed over the bridge and checked in with Steel Shot. The Pamilco County duo was working at Southern Salt Seafood Company and Waterfront Restaurant located at 701 Evans St., Morehead City. The dinner crowd was winding down by the time I arrived at 10 pm to enjoy the last few numbers from their set list that night. It has been sometime since I caught this two piece outfit that offers every genre known to mankind except opera and classical compositions. Tonight you can catch these boys at Fatbacks Bar & Gameroom located at 1100 Dan Peele Rd., Bear Grass, NC. Music starts at 9 pm and the entertainment goes til they quit.
My final stop last Saturday filled my prescription for rocking good times thanks to The BiPolar Express who rocked the beach on the deck at Off The Hook located at 105 S 7th St., Morehead City. This New Bern based trio is a welcome visitor at this station and they always give the crowd rock done right. Featuring the music of 70’s 80’s and 90’s rock outfits, they have a fun set that offers a lot of great songs that few others cover. On bass and vocals there is Wick Wickline on the frontline, full of energy and ready to rock. On the other side of the stage there is Josh Overby with guitar and vox chops to added to the mix, he too offers a great mix energy to the band’s presence. The two feed off each other and it impact the audience. Behind the kit and keep the rock rolling is the heavy and timely hands of Mike Lancaster who offers some mic work also in the quest for delivering all things rock.
The United Way of Coastal Carolina and 106.5 WSFL present the 3rd annual Bacon and Brew Festival in New Bern, NC! We will have live music with Dr. Bacon, great beer selection, food trucks with a bacon themed menu, games and so much more! Must be 21+ to attend.
Tickets: $15 at the door. Proceeds benefit The United Way Of Coastal Carolina!
Beer: We’ll have something for everyone: light, dark, hoppy, sweet and local!
Bacon: Dank Burrito, Sub Tropics Island Hopper, Shep’s Farm To Truck, King’s BBQ, Soo’s Chocolate, & Sugar Plum Bakery.
Entertainment: Live Music with Dr. Bacon! We’ll also have some games and vendors to keep you entertained.
Hotel & Breakfast: We are excited to announce the official Bacon & Brew Fest Hangover Breakfast at DoubleTree by Hilton New Bern – Riverfront! Hang out with the WSFL crew from 8am-10am the following morning and recover the best way possible… with more bacon! The DoubleTree also has room packages available that include breakfast and tickets to the festival – give them a call at 252-638-3585!
*All beer and food items will be available for purchase, this is not a sampling event.
That is a great pause for an awesome local cause so if you are looking to dance…dance down to the Farmer’s Market at 421 S Front St., New Bern, NC. Doors open at 5 pm and the event wraps up at 10 pm.
While we are getting down on S Front St., let’s head over to The Harvey Mansion located at 221 S Front St., NEw Bern. Tonight you can enjoy the fun and funky grooves from the Crystal Coast with the sound of The Spread coming to us from Morehead City, NC. This band will be giving up grooves you know and originals music you’ll dance to throughout the night on the patio from 8-11 pm. Come out and enjoy the fun times and good vibe of live music on the patio tonight.
Bopping down to Broad Street and wandering into The Brown Pelican located at 411 Broad Street, we find Bruce Lynch on tap for getting his groove on tonight from 7-10 pm. Come out and welcome the weekend with some fun favorites by the local talent we all love. The show is free but feel free to give Lynch a good time and solid applause for his hard work tonight!
Enter our swinging speakeasy and dance the night away. Electro swing mixes classic swing tunes from the jazz age with modern electronic house and hip hop beats. The theme for the night is Vintage Great Gatsby so hit the thrift shop or Grandma’s closet and dress to impress! Wax up that mustache too!
A percentage of proceeds from this event will go to support No Shave November, a non profit organization devoted to growing cancer awareness and raising funds to support cancer prevention, research and education. Find out more by visiting https://No-shave.org/
Swing dance lessons @8pm DJ starts at 9pm
Cover charge $5.00
Live at The City Laundry is located at 901 Pollock St., NEw Bern, NC. They host an awesome stage, food and beverage specials and great talent and fun offerings each week, so stop by and say Hi and see what’s new.
Heading out of town and over the bridge tonight we find it’s a Limited Engagement at Triple Play Restaurant, 111 Williams Road New Bern, NC. The fun party trio will be gigging it good for the sake of making all dance from 10 pm til 1 am. Come get down tonight!
Heading into new territory first we find they are offering an Open Mic Night at Bud’s Tavern located at 823 Youngsville Blvd, Youngsville, NC The event is hosted by Steve Holcomb who wishes for you to know this, “The stage is yours!! Bring your gear, bring your friends, bring your band but most importantly bring your talent! Professional PA, lights, guitar, Roland drum kit all for your use.”
$3 glasses of wine and a fun array of bottled beer at the bar.
Come collaborate or just show off and help us kick off the weekend. Music starts at 8 pm and plays til 10 pm so hurry in and jam tonight!
Check out these two cool cats, better known as Mac & Juice. Tonight the duo will be giving it up at Growlerz Grlz located at 4810 Hope Valley Rd., Durham, NC. This will be their last appearance here this year, so come hang and enjoy their jams from 7-10 pm. This is always a great time to start a weekend.
Speaking of cool cats, The Feral Cats have a show tonight at the new and improved North Street Pub and Eatery, 115 W North St., Kinston, NC. Music starts at 8 pm and the jams last til 11 pm. Come enjoy the fun sounds of rocking blues as you get down with good eats and great service to kick the weekend in right!
Since we are on some of my favorite subjects let me end this final Friday installment with and Adam Hill Band announcement. The band will be rocking at AJ McMurphy’s located at 1914 Turnbury Ct., Greenville, NC. Music starts at 9:30 pm and they will rock you til 12:30 am. Come get straight with great guitar grooves tonight!!
Checking things out around the rest of the region. I ask my Facebook followers where we can go to hear them play. This is what they said this week:
If you have Facebook you can search the many music events happening throughout the state by clicking on:
That is all my news and music that I found for your dancing pleasure. I hope you get out and enjoy the sounds of live music sometime soon. I am dedicated to making sure you know where to go to find it. If you like this blog please sign up and get an email each time we publish. I appreciate my readers, the musicians and the venues who all do a part in keeping live music alive! Thanks for keeping me informed!
Please take kindness with you today and hug strangers. Don’t forget that life is short and could end in a moment, so make sure you take time to enjoy the dance. Party safely people! We love having you here with us! You rock, so don’t roll the car! Rely on sober friends, call a cab or sign up to Uber around!
Send all of your event invites to me on Facebook, so I know where you are playing in the days ahead. I can be found on Facebook by following this link:
I also read emails daily. You can send those to: