Best of Charleston 2008 » Culture, Arts & Entertainment

Best Music Festival in Need of a New Venue

ChazzFest 2008

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ChazzFest 2008
www.chazzfest.com

The second annual Charleston Music & Heritage Festival — ChazzFest 2007 — aimed to put on a fun-filled, all-day super-event last September. But wet, stormy weather, lightning, high temperatures, and some mixed-up ticket policies in the big stadium made for a tough day for the organizers. Nearly 5,000 showed up (just under the attendance of the previous year). But Riddick Lynch (of Shoreline Productions), Rick Jones (of Fish Bait Marketing), Colleen Troy (of Touchpoint Communications), Rob Lamble (of Ear For Music), and other hard-working organizers expected twice as many. The harsh weather was certainly a factor, but the location on Daniel Island proved inconvenient for college-aged kids. While things were hoppin' and rockin' at the jam-band headquarters of Club Court Stage, a strangely restrictive ticket policy (and a total lack of shade) held most general admission ticketholders away from the floor of the stadium and way back from the main acts during the day (Lee Boys, Dottie Peoples, Son Volt, and Branford Marsalis). Things lightened up in time for Kool & The Gang's closing set, but it was sad and disturbing to watch world-class acts perform to such a pitiful-looking audience. Word has it that ChazzFest 2008 is heading downtown. Cheers to that.

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