CONCERT MUSIC | My ears are leaking
Sat. June 23
Redux Contemporary Art Center
136 St. Philip St.
The New Music Collective has been busy lately, bringing both Exquisite Corpse and the heralded Katrina Ballads to town during Spoleto. Before they go into summer hibernation, they're hosting one more show. NMC co-founder Philip White has teamed up with "electro-acoustic flutist" Suzanne Thorpe to form thenumber46, an ambient multimedia experiment that "explores the interplay of sound with psycho-acoustic phenomena." Redux is between exhibits, so they've got the entire space to play with. Don't come looking to boogie. Tracks on their MySpace page include "Flute and Feedback," "Feedback and Flute," and "Empty Words 611." The music is not melodic or catchy, but it's undeniably exploratory and interesting. This is sonic sculpture, made to open the mind rather than blow it. —Stratton Lawrence SATURDAY
EVENT | Take a lift
Reggae Nights featuring Jah Works
Sat. June 23
7:30 p.m. (music starts at 8:30)
James Island County Park
871 Riverland Dr.
It's certainly a Jamaican clime in the air, so when the sun goes down, what's better than skankin' in the grass? James Island County Park kicks off their summertime Reggae Nights series this weekend with the cool grooves of Jah Works, the Baltimore/DC-based band fresh off a tour spreading their irie message in the Middle East. They're the rare band that can pull off a string of shows for the Armed Forces, then play at Amsterdam's "Cannibus Cup." Coolers are off-limits, but plenty of food and bev vendors will be on site. There's also the climbing wall, kayak rentals, and the waterpark, so why not end a perfect day at the park with some roots, rock, and reggae? Bring a blanket and soak it all in. It's summer, and it's time to chillax. —Stratton Lawrence SATURDAY
SPORTS | Hit it, don't quit it
Carolina Beach Tennis Open
Sat. June 23
Free for spectators
Family Circle Tennis Center
161 Seven Farms Dr.
Although the fledgling sport has only been around for two years, beach tennis is rapidly gaining popularity among the sun-and-sand set who want to get more exercise out of their day at the beach. The concept of beach tennis is simple: take off your shoes, grab a racket and a specially-depressurized tennis ball, start volleying and don't let that sucker hit the sand. Saturday's event features free instructional play for spectators (or if you're not feeling beach-tennis-y, just check out the national beach tennis champions, Phil Whitesell and Chris Henderson), food and beverages, and children's activities. Anyone can register by visiting the Beach Tennis USA website or calling the toll-free number, but who needs registration with a sport this laid-back? SATURDAY
EVENT | "Borne back ceaselessly into the past..."
The Great Gatsby Gala
Thurs. June 21
Lowndes Grove Plantation
266 St. Margaret St.
For those with the good sense to skip the Cliffs' Notes and actually read The Great Gatsby in high school, F. Scott Fitzgerald's classic is often a landmark book in people's literary lives. The post-war, pre-crash fable tells a story about purpose in the lives of the idle and rich. For many, that sole purpose was pleasure and partying, and Gatsby threw the greatest galas of them all. To celebrate their 50th anniversary, the Boys & Girls Club of the Trident Area host just such a party, complete with a 1920s dress code and music from the Black Tie Swing Band. The best-dressed couple will be awarded, and everyone will get a chance to bid on silent auction items like vacation packages, diamond earrings, and local art. All proceeds benefit The Boys and Girls Club of the Trident Area, an organization that has changed countless lives and gives children a purpose and an after-school safe hangout off the streets. Get tickets on their website at www.bgclubta.org. And if "everything that happened has a dim hazy cast over it," get a cab home. —Stratton Lawrence SATURDAY
FESTIVAL | Get on the boat, the banana boat
Sat. June 23
Parade (begins at 11 a.m.)
Festival (begins at noon)
$10, $7/advance, $3/children ages 6-12, free for children under six
Off Lockwood Ave.
Although Carifest has been around for years now, this year's celebration is happening a bit early thanks to — of all people — George W. Bush. Last year, Bush signed a proclamation declaring June to be Caribbean-American Heritage Month, so a slew of Charleston events moved into the sixth month, including last week's "Catch the Caribbean Beat!" at the St. Andrew's Library in West Ashley. This Saturday, Carifest kicks off with a Carnival street parade that begins at Wragg Square and winds its way to Brittlebank Park, where you can gorge yourself on jerk chicken and other zingy island food as you sway to the sounds of live music by Slice International Band, Coolie G and Soul Lion, and Trinidadian recording artist Shalin. But the month's still not over! On June 30, the party moves up to North Chuck for the Last Lap Carnival at Riverfront Park. Visit the website for more info or to sign up as a vendor for either festival. SATURDAY