There’s a burgeoning art scene within the city limits of Charleston — one that has had rapper Matt Monday in a stronghold since his days as a choir boy. Outside of soul and funk at the homes of select relatives, the Charleston native wasn’t exposed to much secular music at all. “I didn’t even start listening to rap until I was about 12,” he reveals. “The first album I ever had was one of Juvenile’s… Soulja Rags. And Soulja Slim’s Soulja 4 Life.” He saw the parallels between life in Nawlins as told by the two N.O. pioneers and his own day-to-day observations in Charleston and that was it — Matt Monday was almost instantly committed to finding his space in the music. His next project Candy Paint Playgrounds [inspired by the work of visual artist Fletcher Williams] is a collaborative effort with super producer Sonny Digital, slated for release in late 2017. “The scale isn’t balanced,” he laments, referring to today’s hip-hop. “There’s a lot of things out here I don’t believe in. Nothing has made me feel like Soulja Slim and Juvenile.” He hopes his upcoming work will restore some symmetry. According to Matt, sonically, Candy Paint Playgrounds is unlike anything rap fans are familiar with. “It’s like…,” he says, pausing. “British stadium rock meets old negro spiritual meets Juvenile’s bravado. I just hope it’s different. I don’t wanna sound like anybody else.”
Originally hailing from Tallahassee, Florida, solo musician Pierce Alexander made the move to Charleston, South Carolina- where he is currently honing his style as a guitarist and songwriter. Alexander’s recent work might best be described as alternative rock with a modern edge, incorporating elements of jazz, rock, and electronic music into songs which strive to have complexity and several layers of meaning. Alexander’s artistic influences are varied-from Radiohead, David Bowie, and The Smiths, to his favorite authors and poets, to where he has lived and to the friends, musicians, and mentors he has met along the way. These days, Pierce can often be found walking the streets of downtown Charleston with a guitar on his back or tucked in the back of a coffee shop writing lyrics. His latest singles are Waiting for the Show (2015), Thoughts Like These (2016), Keeps Me Away (March 2017), and Starlight Set You Free (August 2017). An EP is in the works for early 2018.
Somewhere between Rock and Blues, Joshua Jarman’s songs embody a refreshing take on many styles of songwriting. Drawing influence from Pink Floyd, Nick Drake, John Martyn, and several other popular, sometimes obscure, music artists. Joshua has 17 years of guitar playing experience, and 10 years as a songwriter/ performer. Boasting an uncommon guitar playing style referred to as ‘Percussive-fingerpicking,’ Joshua’s performance is both lulling to the ear, and captivating to watch. Joshua Jarman released his first EP in 2016 by the name, “MUD.” This album attributes it’s concept to the overcoming of, and transmutation of diversity. It is available along side two other releases on iTunes, Spotify, Pandora, and other major retailers. Joshua has been featured on Fox24 News, ABC4 News, BalconyTV Charleston, Awendaw Green Swamp Sessions, ThoseToWatch Radio, and has been named tie-winner for the Charleston Acoustic Guitar Throwdown Competition in 2014.
Anfernee Robinson is an artist whose genre-bending variations of hip-hop make his music very vibrant and unpredictable. His passion for music is shown in every endeavor. His various experiences introduced him to many walks of life and have given him a deep perspective of his own and of the world around him. His first-hand experiences with homelessness, depression, and generational poverty created a brimming entity of energy that began to manifest into a creative outlet. It is uplifting and upsetting. Hopefully pessimistic. A positively cynical commentary on his own experiences. It is Anfernee.
Charleston native Cat Strickland performs her alternative cover re-creations around the Charleston area. Her song list changes moods the way Cat changes her hair color. Her music can be described as a blend of punk, rock, and alternative. Relatively new to the Charleston music scene, she has received pretty inspiring feedback and collected some very devoted followers. Many have encouraged her to write her own music, which will be coming soon. She plans to pursue music education in college and beyond.
“The south has something to say!” This famous quote from legendary recording artist, Andre 3000 would grow to inspire generations of southern hip hop artists to come. Hailing from Lawton, Oklahoma, a city known for its growing military population and gang infestation, Mike McFLY has defied the odds all of his life. He began writing and recording at the young age of 16 and has been developing his craft and love for music ever since. In 2011, he was the only rap artist to be selected to perform in the world renowned talent showcase, “Showtime At the Apollo” in Columbia, SC. In 2015 He embarked on his first independent tour in Europe where he opened for Action Bronson, Joey Badass, Just Blaze, Danny Brown, Pusha T, Statik Selektah, Skepta, and Tim Westwood at the largest hip hop festival in europe, Fresh Island Fest in Pag, Croatia. At first listen, you will notice that Mike McFLY has the ability to craft a mainstream sound while maintaining the integrity of a true lyricist like his predecessors from the south. Compelled with his passion for change, Mike McFLY aims to inspire his listeners to rebel against societal standards, be unique and spread love to one another. His life motto is simple: be the change that you wish to see in the world!
Becca Smith is on a mission to change the world through her love for music. She was born and raised in South Carolina and finished school at the College of Charleston in 2015. Smith has been singing for as long as she can remember, but her life changed when she picked up the guitar at age 8. Becca is an old soul whose biggest musical inspirations are found in artists such as the Beatles, Patsy Cline, Etta James, James Taylor, Otis Redding, and Neil Young. She has performed with Balcony TV and Lowcountry Live, and is currently recording a full-length, original album at Truphonic Studios in West Ashley. Her debut album, entitled Serendipity, is due out in January of 2018.
Contour is an exploration of expression through music and sound. “We take cues from the greats of black music that came before us and try to apply their teachings to our own craft. Whether in our live band format, or in the electronically composed creations of Khari Lucas, we seek to inspire emotion and awareness in our audience.”
Bizness Suit is a 4-piece rock band from Charleston, SC. The band was originally founded in 2014 by Sean Barry (guitar/vocals) and Drew Tapp (Bass). They later added Jeremy Hunton (drums) and Hunter Moss (guitar). After a 3 month fundraising campaign through Kickstarter, a long plane trip to LA, and a week in the studio, Bizness Suit completed their debut album, “Grey Sky Blues”. During the mixing process, producer Martin Guigui introduced the band to ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons, and Scott Page, saxophonist for Pink Floyd and Supertramp. Page contributed to two tracks on the album and Gibbons is featured on the single “Rock ‘N’ Rolla.” The trio signed with Pacific Records of San Diego. With the backing of Pacific Records, the band released the single “Rock ‘N’ Rolla” on January 10th, with “Grey Sky Blues” on February, 10th, 2017. They plan to return to the studio this fall for some more bluesy, funky rock n’ roll.
Ethereal, genre bending, R&B songstress Niecy Blues captivated a cult-like following with her 2015 debut EP, Opaque. Hailing from Lawton, Oklahoma and coming from a professional musical theatre background, Blues uses her experiences and trance-like voice to create and carve a unique sound in the landscape of 21-century music. Upon first listen, Niecy introduces some and reunites others to a feeling of what she believes can change the world: LOVE.
In 2017, Niecy Blues was selected to headline the annual, local renowned, Black Expo Festival in Columbia, SC. Her music has spread “grass roots” style among the southern region. She has been featured as the Artist to Watch in both the The State, local Columbia, SC newspaper, and Charleston City Paper. Blues aims to pierce the conscious of her listeners with revolutionary tales of love, spirituality, social issues, acceptance and impact her community one heart at a time.
Cisco Kids is a Charleston band that formed and met locally in Charleston SC in late 2016. Soon after, they arrived on the Charleston music scene with their eclectic blend of rock, R&B, blues, and funk. Cisco Kids share a mutual love of various music and expanded their sonic journey to all corners of Charleston and other cities in the Southeast. After playing together a few times, their diverse interests in music led to a culmination of sonic cohesion that none of the members could deny, and Cisco Kids was officially born. Cisco Kids’ support and fans have spread their music even further and the band hopes to continue their journey to bring Charleston’s unique music scene to the world.
Witness Charleston’s one and only marching-band influenced psychedelic rock band, Orange Doors. A truly eclectic live performance you don’t want to miss. In 2010, Orange Doors was formed with Ian Russell and Michael Ewens in Summerville, SC. Since then they have released two albums, “The Silver Sun” and “Mush”, a more matured sophomore album. With producer (Thomas O’Brien) joining in on drums, and Jackson Inabinett playing the trombone and tuba, the live product really began to materialize. Together, they have toured the southeast stopping in cities like Savannah, Athens, Atlanta, Asheville, and Wilmington. They are currently working on their third album “Slaphappy”. This will be their most creative and conceptual album yet. You can find their music virtually on any platform, “give us a like on Facebook, and follow us on instagram!”
TWN is a Florence, Kentucky transplant who has created a name for himself as one of Columbia’s (SC) staple male R&B crooners. His musical choices meld the worlds of classic and current R&B. His latest project, Blue Sky District, highlights his signature sound and vocal range. As a member of one of the city’s most popular hip-hop groups, The Voydd, he’s been featured on 15 songs in the past year. When he’s not lending his vocals to another well-deserving artist, TWN spends his time working on his engineering skills. You can find his latest releases on Soundcloud.
Charleston, South Carolina’s Stop Light Observations is the revolutionary four-member band whose rapidly increasing fan base has found them breaking the record for most consecutive sellouts at The Music Farm and landing coveted slots at Bonnaroo and Firefly Music Festival. SLO’s most recent LP, Toogoodoo, saw coverage at major national outlets from PBS and Conan O’Brien’s Fresh Noise to Impose, PopMatters, and Garden & Gun. Now, following the successful release of Toogoodoo, and an ambitious year on the road in support, Stop Light Observations are poised to tackle their next major endeavor—an ongoing series of digital 45s, each with an A-side and B-side, entitled The Volume. Stop Light Observations may be blazing their own trails, but they want everyone to join them on their journey—fans, friends and family, past and present. “The Volume releases will ultimately be defined as a series—a voice for the voiceless. A podium for those who have yearned for the opportunity to share their own stories of struggle, passion, and love,” vocalist Will Blackburn explains.
Whitehall is the musical child of five musicians based in Charleston, SC. Since forming during the winter of 2014 in a college dorm, Whitehall has fused together the musical backgrounds of each member, ranging from EDM to funk to folk, to create a diverse and unique style that is constantly evolving. The band thrives on experimentation and grows their sound with every note they play, translating themes like disillusionment, euphoric love, and occasionally humor into a high energy, kick-ass live show.
Slim C.O.D also known as Cody Dixon is a hip hop producer, musician, and poet. He also acts as executive director and founder of Soul power productions, a nonprofit with a mission of arts advocacy and education to underserved areas. Influenced heavily by the 90’s golden era of hip hop, funk, and jazz he integrates eclectic hip hop samples and instrumentation similar to a tribe called quest or the roots. Usually with his Hip hop duo Speakerbox, for Lowcountry Giving Day Slim will be performing with a full band of Charleston Jazz and funk musicians like Noah Jones (from Man-Child), Pat Magwood ( from Whitehall) and Oleg Terentiev (from Katet) along with other special surprise guests.
Out of Order is a psychedelic rock band from Charleston, South Carolina. The music is based on tiny little hints of funk, jazz, and blues undertones. The band members all have a very broad variety of musical influences, including Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles, Mac Demarco, and badbadnotgood. It is comprised of Brendan Fitzpatrick on lead guitar, Stephen Votta on bass and vocals, Zach Shirley on guitar, synthesizer, and vocals, and Alex Brouwer on drums. We strive to lay down a mind expanding groove that’ll drown your brain in a hallucinogenic river of bliss. If you just open your mind and let your soul flow, you will slip into a trance like meditative state that can connect us all with this groovy thing called love. Your aura will notice some beautiful ribbons of magenta rays twisted with dynamic shifting of frequencies to put you on the right vibe. Most importantly, we hope you dig it.
In a time of self-gratification, social media and societal divergence, soul pop artist Emily Curtis is a reviving and innovatively commanding voice that evokes feelings of wisdom and empowerment. Growing up watching her father perform around her hometown of Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, music has always been a focal point of her life. Curtis has had an unwavering passion for music even from a young age, where she attempted to jumpstart bands with other girls on local playgrounds. This passion would only grow as she got older. While attending The University of South Carolina, she joined the female a cappella group, The Cocktails, which influenced her to start her own solo career following graduation from USC. With the upcoming release of her debut EP, Curtis is on a mission to inspire hope and share her heart with her audience in a way that is both authentic and hopeful.
Julian Harrell performs under the stage name Abstract. An artist out of Georgetown, South Carolina he is currently studying Marketing and Arts Management at the College of Charleston. He specializes in the art of songwriting and has experience tracking vocals, mixing, recording, marketing, and performing. He views his music as a reflection of himself, his opinions, and his environment.Abstract says, “as I grow I’m still learning about myself and others, thus my state of mind changes constantly. The name Abstract is not only to elude that I’m different in a sense but also to describe my world and how I perceive it which is always in a constant state of change. Overall I’m just a free mind in search of knowledge throughout all mediums of life. My goal as a hip hop artist is to make M.U.S.I.C. An acronym I created. It stands for music that Maintains , Utilizes, Supports, Inspires, and Cultivates.”.
Jeremy McLellan is a standup comedian based in Charleston, SC where he won the 2015 and 2016 Charleston Standup Comedy Competition and was named Best Local Comic in the Charleston City Paper. In addition to telling jokes all over the country he has also performed with TJ Miller, Todd Barry, Tig Notaro, Mark Normand and others. Never one to shy away from controversy, his material covers a wide range of hot-button topics like politics, gender, race, disability, religion, and Santa Claus.
Genesis is a 29 year old, Georgia native and Charleston transplant, certifying her as the official judge of all things Charleston. Genesis owns Girly Bits Comedy giving a platform to fringe Comedians at local shows such as Holy City HaHa at the Sparrow.
Colin Musolf is a full time high school student and amateur comedian. He performed most recently in the Home for the Holidays Variety Show at the Scottie Theater. Colin has his own channel on YouTube, Jortbros, where he posts original comedy videos and short films. He recently directed and filmed a documentary and started his second channel, HomesickFilms. In his free time he enjoys counting his money and listening to Major Tom by Peter Schilling. He is excited to be performing at Lowcountry Giving Day.
lindsay holler sings and plays guitar. her voice moves onto the sidewalk through a cracked upstairs window on dusky afternoons. it smells you with its tongue, pensively considers, and strikes. In clubs and theatres … its the same. On some occasions it caresses; other times accuses. When amplified it can be seen on the air … then we all drown.
Holler lives in Charleston, South Carolina. She hails the South as home and has lived in New Orleans and New York; she studied at Berklee College of Music in Boston. The music’s current state of evolution is supported by a little twang and a little late-night clarity.
Holler cites influences from the likes of Tom Waits, Gram Parsons, Nina Simone and Neil Young – preferring genre straddlers, categorical misfits and indefinables.
Bluffton Self Help
Changed Lives Ministry
Charleston Habitat for Humanity
Dorchester County Community Outreach
Eagle Harbor Boys Ranch
East Cooper Habitat for Humanity
Florence Crittenton Programs of SC
Habitat for Humanity of Berkeley County
Increasing H.O.P.E Financial Training Center
Lowcountry Alliance for Model Communities
Lowcountry Housing and Economic
Lowcountry Orphan Relief
My Sister’s House
Pro Bono Legal Services, Inc.
Sea Island Habitat for Humanity
STAR Gospel Mission
Thrive SC Domestic Violence Project
We Are Family
A Healing Grace
American Cancer Society
Association for the Blind
Beautiful Gate Center
Carolina Children’s Charity
Channel the Beacon
Coastal Crisis Chaplain
Darkness to Light
Dee Norton Child Advocacy Center
Fresh Start Healing Heart
Girls on the Run
Healthy Lifestyle Network
Lowcountry Aids Services
Lowcountry Aquatic Project Swimming
Mental Health Heroes
Respite Care Charleston
Ronald McDonald House
South Carolina Advocates for Epilepsy
Walk for Autism
Berkeley County Museum & Heritage Center
Charleston Pipe Band
Charleston Symphony Orchestra
Gibbes Museum of Art
Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art
Jazzscape Junior Jazz Foundation
Musical Theatre Center
North Charleston POPS!
Southeastern Wildlife Exposition
Taylor Music Group
The Sophia Institute
This Is Noteworthy
Able Life Foundation
Be A Mentor
Birthdays for All
Carolina Youth Development Center
Charleston Area Senior Citizens
Charleston Port & Seafarers Society
Dorchester Children’s Center
I <3 Hungry Kids
Junior League of Charleston
Loving America Street
Meals on Wheels of Summerville
Mothers Against Drunk Driving of SC
Our Lady of Mercy Community
Sea Island Hunger Awareness Fund
The Salvation Army
Turning Leaf Project
Windwood Family Services
Camp Happy Days
Charleston Research Institute
Clap Your Hands
Down Syndrome Association of the Lowcountry
East Cooper Community Outreach
Fields to Families
Fresh Future Farm
Lowcountry Firefighter Support Team
Lowcountry Local First
Palmetto Military Support Group
Palmetto Warrior Connection
Save the Light
The Green Heart Project
The Sustainablility Institute
Veterans On Deck
Charleston Animal Society
Frances R. Willis Rescue
H.O.P.E Acres Rescue
Hallie Hill Animal Sanctuary
International Center for Sustainability
Lowcountry Equine Assisted
Lowcountry Lab Rescue
Lowcountry Marine Mammal Network
New Dawn Parrot Sanctuary
Pet Helpers Adoption Center and Spay/Neuter Clinic
Turtle Survival Alliance
Valiant Animal Rescue & Relief
Youth to Ocean
Anthropological Research Center
BEGIN WITH BOOKS
Beyond Our Walls
Carolina Voyager Charter School
Charleston County First Steps
Charleston Friends of the Library
College of Charleston
Communities in Schools
Girl Scouts of Eastern Carolina
Junior Achievement of Greater South Carolina
Patriots Point Naval and Maritime
Small Town Restoration
Teachers Supply Closet
Tri-County Cradle to Career
Trident Literacy Association
WINGS for Kids
Youth Empowerment Service