March 2013

Rev. Syd and The Homewreckers and Brief Awakening

By Jason Robinson

rev syd and the homewreckers carolina mixerThe Cellar, established in Spartanburg, always hosts some of the most versatile acts around the area. This night was no exception, for it was Rev. Syd and the Homewreckers, with opening act and Asheville, North Carolina based, Brief Awakening. This is the venue were Rev. Syd and the Homewreckers were born and seems to be sort of a homecoming for the jam band. After a quick smoke break outside and a stroll over to the bar, I notice Kara-Lynn and Kat Petrucci, of Brief Awaking, were all set up and ready to play. I took a seat up front to listen to the duo play. It’s always exciting to hear a group you’ve never heard before. The set was melodic and dynamic, filled with harmony that was very uplifting. They were joined on stage, mid-set, by Hope Lucktenberg and her violin, to add more to the dynamic sound of the band. Lyrically, they seem to have some complex songwriting’s that fit the tone for them.

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Snidely Sidewinder and the Unrepentant Uke Boys

By Jason Robinson


"Do I have Beer in my Mustache?" was a phrase unrepentantly asked by one Ned Barrett at a recently Snidely Sidewinder and the Unrepentant Uke boys gig. What makes Snidely Sidewinder and the Unrepentant Uke boys Spartanburg South Carolina's best kept secret until now? Well, let’s start with the look according to the quartet's Facebook page the group has a wardrobe that is something like “Oliver Twists nightmares”, then there is the mustache (sometimes fake) that is also the bands logo, the flat hipster hat, the bicycle and of course the most importantly of all the sweet sound of the Ukulele. Now to introduce your new favorite band members there is Joe Mullinax, Ned Barrett, Scott Robbins and Mikey Reiding. Collectively all members eat nails for breakfast with hold the milk. The fellas have came a long way past few years and are putting together an impressive resume that includes everything from being  guests and performing on WSPA  News Channel 7's Jack and Kimberly to opening for Kathleen whale. The first time I had witness the band up close and personal was outside HUB-BUB The Showroom while waiting on the Southern Culture on the Skids show. They had set up an improv gig outside the building with the Uke case open for tips. I was hook line and sinker for the guys and since then have become an avid follower of the quartet that is making me proud to be a native of Spartanburg.

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Jud Block and The Wiggle Wagons - Live at The Handlebar

By Jason Robinson

jud block carolina mixerJud Block - Photo by Mother Shutter PhotographyMonday nights at Greenville's The Handlebar are quite economically viable to see some live entertainment. This evening was rainy and made the premier listening room of all upstate South Carolina very cozy. I arrived with my colleague April Britt-Kelly to a parking lot flowing of rain drops by the buckets. The cover was only a five dollar bill to see two great North Carolina artists in The Wiggle Wagons and Jud Block. The two were so gracious to brave the weather of the evening to come down the I-85 highway to play for some hard working folks on a Monday evening. Jud Block is quite the lyricists hailing from the great state of Texas and inspired to play from the songs of the legendary Townes Van Zandt. The proud Texan moved to Florida where he played in a few bands and had a lot of success with the cow-punk band Cattle-truck. After Cattle-truck parted ways Jud went solo and has released two albums to much critical acclaim. Jud was up first and played a solo acoustic set with powerful lyrics to the working class who were sipping down a cold Papst Blue Ribbons to wind down a hard day of work.

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Mauldin Middle School Wind Ensemble

mauldin middle wind ensemble 01The Mauldin Middle School Wind Ensemble performs at Byrnes High School. Photo by Mother Shutter Photography.

The award winning Mauldin Wind Ensemble is comprised of 7th and 8th graders from the Mauldin Middle School Band, and is directed by Jim Kilgus and Julie Poston. The Mauldin Middle School Band is the largest band in the state of South Carolina, with more members than all colleges and high schools within the state.

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