Artists Picking Artists: Vilai Harrington

  • By cvbizz
  • May 20, 2020
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vilai harrington
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Brett Barest

When we first imagined this series I knew that I would be asking Vilai Harrington for his contribution and, frankly, I am not sure how it took so long to get here. I am not surprised, however, to find that my friend Vilai’s list was worth the wait.

I first met Vilai when he was working at Moe Joe’s during what I believe was a Dallas Baker show. He was new the local scene, having recently moved from Aiken, and when he mentioned that he was a musician as well, I told him I would have to come see him play sometime. When my wife and did see him play live and talked to him again, our takeaway impression was twofold as I said “Hey, he’s pretty good” and “What a genuinely nice guy.” Today, I stand by the latter sentiment but the former has been replaced by “Holy crap, he just keeps getting better and better at this.” It has been an honor to watch and listen to Vilai’s progression over the years and, more importantly, be able to call him a friend.

Thus, it should come as no surprise that when Vilai shared his list with me, it came with the prelude that “I could approach this multiple different ways with the amount of amazing artists out there, but what I feel like doing is showcasing some good people that also happen to be kick ass at music. There are so many more people in music that I am so thankful for.” He did not just pick people he likes as artists but artists he loves as people and while I am sure everybody that has participated in this series has done that in their own ways, leave it to the big teddy bear Vilai to make that the cornerstone of his mission statement right out of the gates.

James Tucker

Vilai says…“I met James not too long after he moved into Greenville at Moe Joe’s and the amount of growth as a writer and performer in him since then had been exponential. He has worked hard and made a notch for himself in the country scene and I’m proud to call him a friend.”
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She Returns From War

Vilai says… “I was first enamored by her songwriting when I heard her perform her song “Connector” at a house party in Charleston many moons ago.  She has been nothing but a beautiful soul and one of my favorite songwriters and friends.” Follow them on Facebook

Von Strantz

Vilai says… “I ran into Jess and Kelsey when I was first starting out and they soon took me under their wings and showed me the road like the big sisters I never had. I learned so much from them about every part of the business, performance, booking/planning, musicianship and holding yourself to a good standard.” Follow on Facebook

Mark Webb Jr.

Vilai says… “Great songwriter and even better man. Like a brother to me in the community, He is always a listening ear with a wise word.”
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The Apartment Club

Vilai says… “’Outsiders’ in the upstate community, this Spartanburg band will blow your minds when they perform and take your hearts as soon as you get to know them. Some of the sweetest and most genuine people I have ever met. “
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Vilai Harrington & the Hamptones

As usual, I am adding this one in myself. Back when shows were a thing, I used this space to talk about Vilai Harrington & the Hamptones recent album Sandhill Shaman ahead of its release show at The Radio Room (read that here). I can also tell you that they have since released the single “From Beyond” which you can check out here. Coincidentally, the video for that single releases TODAY at 1pm sharp, so we have that to look forward to this afternoon.

Beyond all of that, I can tell you that Vilai is one of the people I am most looking forward to seeing out in the world when this madness is behind us. Whether it is on a local stage or just having a beer with him after trivia at Quest, I will be happy either way. Thanks to Vilai for giving all of us some great music (and people) to carry us through the week ahead.

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