Rockin' on the Point:
Sol Driven Train
Weekly harbor-side music series Rockin' at the Point continues Fri. May 30 at the Charleston Harbor Resort (20 Patriots Point Blvd.) with two live sets — one from popular rock/reggae/funk ensemble Sol Driven Train and another from busy local singer/guitarist Joal Rush. The music kicks off around 6 p.m. Visit www.earformusic.com and www.charlestonharborresort.com for more.
Edwin McCain's Fault
Veteran S.C. folk-pop singer/guitarist Edwin McCain has played a major part in cementing a twangy, collegiate-friendly "Carolina sound." It's usually a simple, blue-eyed soul style akin to those of Hootie and The Blue Dogs. A regular feature in the Charleston club scene, McCain's latest album, Nobody's Fault But Mine (Saguaro Road), is due in stores on Tues. June 24. As he puts it, the album is a collection of "vintage R&B and classic Southern soul songs." McCain and his band perform Sat. July 26 at the Music Farm. Check out www.edwin.com and www.musicfarm.com for more.
Mark Bryan Hits Road
Speaking of that Carolina rock style, Lowcountry songwriter/guitarist Mark Bryan (of Hootie & The Blowfish) hits the road for a quick tour around the South behind his latest solo effort, End of the Front, recorded at his home studio near Awendaw. His touring band consists of some fine players: bassist Jamie Crisp (of Big Stoner Creek), drummer Tom Hamer (of The Fire Apes, Hed Shop Boys), and guitarist Danielle Howle (a veteran songwriter from Columbia who collaborated with Bryan on her latest solo album). The Bridge at 105.5 has been playing tracks off the new disc. The band travels up the East Coast and back down through Florida in late June. Look for Bryan and his side project, Occasional Milkshake (with members of tThe Blue Dogs) at the Rockin' at the Point gig on Fri. June 20. Check out www.myspace.com/markbryanmusic for more.
Skankin' at AJ's
Although they booked live bands on their main stage and outside deck early on, James Island tavern AJ's Sports Bar & Grill (1291 Folly Road, 843-762-5695) hasn't featured many bands of late, so we were surprised to see the announcement for "Rydhum" — a punk/ska/reggae event booked for Wed. May 28. On the bill are Aberdeen, Md., reggae/rock band Ballyhoo, local old-school punk-rockers The 33's, and Creative Flame. The gig starts at 9 p.m.
Under the guidance of musician/organizer Leah Suárez (of Jazz Artists of Charleston), the locally-produced Upstairs at Mistral events — a major part of Piccolo Spoleto's Blues & Jazz series — continue this week at Mistral (99 S. Market St., 843-722-5708). It's an impressively diverse celebration of local jazz, soul, and improvisational talent. Each event takes place on the second floor (the entrance is at 180 Meeting St.) and features two sets from each act at 7:30 and 10:30 p.m. Look for The College of Jazz (a local jazz "ensemble of professors") on Thurs. May 29. There's a jam session from The Charleston All-Stars on Fri. May 30, sax-driven jazz combo The Mark Sterbank Jazz Group on Sat. May 31, classic-jazz combo Robert Lewis & Fearless Jones (with Frank Duvall) on Sun. June 1, and Latin/Brazilian jazz/bossa nova combo Duda Lucena Quartet on Mon. June 2. There's more to follow next week as well. Visit www.jazzartistsofcharleston.org for more.
Bell = Crowfield
For anyone wondering what happened to local groove/pop act Bell, here's the deal: The core of the band — singer/guitarist Tyler Mecham and singer/pianist Joe Giant — stepped away from the variations of the Bell project, changed their band name to Crowfield, spent time in an Atlanta studio with producer Rick Beato, and completed a 10-song album titled Goodbye, Goodnight, So Long Midwestern for Beato's new start-up label, Ten Star Records. They celebrate the official release on Sat. June 14 with a show at the Village Tavern. "We're very excited about the new album," says Mecham. "It's been a long time coming and a lot of work." For more info, visit www.myspace.com/crowfieldmusic.
A Decent Animal: Alive & Well
Former Charleston trio A Decent Animal split town in March for new adventures in San Francisco. "This place is pretty amazing — kind of dreamlike, actually," reports bassist Richard Weld. "Great weather but no barbecue. It's a trade-off, I guess. The band is doing well. We haven't played many shows yet but have a few in the works." They recently landed an opening slot for a Modest Mouse gig on Tues. May 27 at the Grand Sierra Resort in Reno, Nev. "We are working with our booking agent to submit to labels, and we are optimistic about that. Combined with the awesome power of [booking agency] Inland Empire Touring, will see us on the cover of Rolling Stone by the end of the summer!" Visit www.myspace.com/adecentanimal for more.