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Who's Bad, Lowcountry Cajun Festival, Jazz News, Shoreline Ballroom, Beer & Wine Fest

Pulse: Music news shorts

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Wanna Be Starting Something

Based in Chapel Hill, N.C., the over-the-top, super-tight Michael Jackson tribute act Who's Bad return to Charleston for a show at the Pour House on Fri. April 4. The group formed five years ago to "recreate the music, the choreography, and the showmanship of the self-proclaimed King of Pop, from his days in the Jackson 5 on up to Invincible." Check out www.whosbadmusic.com for more.

Vou San Vou-Mem Byen?

The 17th annual Lowcountry Cajun Festival, a family-friendly event celebrating the history and influence of Creole and Cajun culture, takes place at the James Island County Park (871 Riverland Drive, 843-795-4FUN) on Sun. April 6 from 12-6 p.m. Tickets are available for $8 in advance and $10 at the gate (it's free for kids 12 and under and Gold Pass holders). Big Red & The Zydeco Playmakers, featuring singer/accordion player Josef "Big Red" Arline, specialize in funky zydeco and blues on their new disc, Secret Ingredients. Zydeco band Curley Tayor & Zydeco Trouble (singer/accordion player Curley got his start playing in his dad's band, Jude Taylor & His Burning Flames) play later in the afternoon. Their latest is titled Free Your Mind. Check out www.ccprc.com.

Post-Bridge Run Show at I'On

Charleston roots/rock favorites The Blue Dogs and the Tim Hodson Trio perform an outdoor, post-Bridge Run show at the Westlake Amphitheater in Mt. Pleasant's I'On neighborhood (252 Ponsbury Road, (843-881-7541). The Blue Dogs (www.bluedogs.com) recently released a live collection on DVD titled Live at the Dock Street Theatre and co-headlined the annual Simple Man Cruise. Singer/guitarist Hodson (www.myspace.com/timhodson) recently relocated from northern Virginia to Charleston and plays solo and with guests at various local venues. The event runs from 2:30-7:30 p.m. on Sat. April 5. Visit www.theiontrust.org.

Jazzy Jam at Fiery Ron's

Local sax player Louis Dixson, a busy collaborator who conducts a weekly jam at Porgy's Other Place (137 Calhoun St.) every Tuesday evening, welcomes special guests for a newly booked, monthly jazzy jam session every "first Friday" at Fiery Ron's Home Team BBQ (1205 Ashley River Road, (843- 225-RIBS). The kick-off gig starts at 10 p.m. on Fri. June 6. Check out www.hometeambbq.com and www.myspace.com/louiedandthedixsonsiders for more.

Spoleto: Jazz

Spoleto Festival USA's popular Wachovia Jazz Series features an international variety of artists at the Cistern, Gaillard Auditorium, and the Recital Hall at the Simons Center for the Arts. It's an imressive lineup: San Francisco-based jazz/cabaret vocalist Paula West and her backing band The George Mesterhazy Quartet; Baltimore-bred jazz/gospel pianist Cyrus Chestnut and his trio; Italian composer/saxophonist Stefano Cocco Cantini and his quartet; concert flutist Paula Robinson in a Brazilian-styled trio setting with Romero Lubambo and Cyro Baptista; São Paulo pianist/composer Heloísa Fernandes (making her official U.S. debut); French accordionist Daniel Mille (making his U.S. debut with Eric Seva on saxophone and Eric Longsworth on cello); composer/soloist/collaborator/ensemble member Gerry Hemingway; and N.C.-based African-American traditional string band/folk trio Carolina Chocolate Drops. Call (843) 579-3100 and visit www.spoletousa.org for more.

Shoreline Ballroom opens in Hilton Head

There's a brand-new, large-sized live music venue down in Hilton Head Island. The Shoreline Ballroom, located at the all-new Ocean Center (at the entrance to the Hilton Head Beach and Tennis Resort) at 40 Folly Field Road, celebrates a Grand Opening on Thurs. April 10, with live music from progressive jam band moe., Martin Sexton, Southern Fried Chicks, and the Edwin McCain Band are already on the schedule for April. Shows at the Shoreline Ballroom are produced by Lighthouse Entertainment, a concert and comedy booking and promotions company established in early 2007 by former music venue owners and managers. "The venue will host events ranging from small, intimate engagements to crowds of up to 1,600, and acts ranging from popular stand-up comedians to musical artists from a wide variety of genres," says club management. Tickets are available at www.etix.com. The venue's box office can be reached by phone at (843) 842-0358. See www.shorelineballroom.com for more.

Beer & Wine Fest at Boone Hall

The Charleston Beer and Wine Festival at Boone Hall Plantation (1235 Long Point Road) on Fri., April 11 features live music from Riptide, Intensity, and The Mighty Kicks from 6-10 p.m. Tickets are $16 in advance, $20 day of event. See www.boonehallplantation.com for more. —TBL

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