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Brett Barest on Upstate Music: The Radio Room Hosts A Weekend (And Then Some) Of Incredible Shows

I realize I mention the Radio Room a lot but it is not without good reason; Wes Gilliam is consistently booking music that I want to see week in and week out. That being said, he puts such an emphasis on diversity of genres that I do not generally want to see a whole weekend of music there as not everything is my cup of tea. I’m way too old for Radio Room’s heavy metal shows, would be one example of that.

This weekend, however, the Radio Room has put together a lineup that has me making entirely unachievable plans of going every single night ahead.

It starts Thursday with a visit from future country legend Caleb Caudle, that is, if there is any justice in the world. Caudle’s musical journey began in a punk band in rural North Carolina at the age of 15 but he eventually grew into an incredible singer/songwriter with a sound that is all his own. Early influences like The Clash and Velvet Underground combine with an autobiographical songwriting style that draws comparisons to Jason Isbell for an absolute treat to the ear. The weekend starts on Thursday with this one and, as an added bonus, local favorite Vilai Harrington kicks things off.

The fun rolls into Friday with an evening of indie rock courtesy of The High Divers. The Charleston based band has been together since 2014 and, since then, has gone forth to make a name for themselves on the national scene. Beautiful harmonies and deep, thoughtful songwriting make this one of the very best South Carolina rock bands on the scene today. Don’t miss this show and make sure to get there early for local rockers Apricot Blush.

The Radio Room keeps its foot pressed firmly on the gas with the return of Daddy’s Beemer Saturday night. This fun and spirited indie rock outfit used to be a regular part of Radio Room events when they were a local band but now that they call Charleston home, missing an Upstate show is a harder pill to swallow. See what they have been to when they visit this Saturday with Little Bird and Dead Swells.

Normally I would call all of this a solid weekend of music but after a brief day of rest on Sunday, Monday dials things back up with National Park Radio. I am not sure whether to call this a great start to a new week or a continuation of an awesome weekend but, either way, this is yet another show you will not want to miss. Hailing from Arkansas’s Ozark Mountains, this is the modern folk band’s first visit to South Carolina . Boring Mondays be damned, let’s make sure to give them a good reason to come back. 

Any one of these shows are worth getting out of the house for on a normal weekend but the fact that they are happening across a five day span at a single venue is a testament to the Radio Room’s commitment to the local music scene. Wes told me recently that he was just “trying to do the damn thing” when it comes to booking quality shows and, from where I sit, I would say he is doing it pretty damn well.

I would also like to add that while all of this is happening at a single venue, there are even more great shows happening around town at other spots this weekend. Eighth State Brewing continues to deliver a steady of dose of live music every weekend and this one is no different. John the Revelator is a local favorite of mine and will be joined by the Well Drinkers and Either/Or this Saturday evening. Also, Added Color is a Brazilian-American rock out of Brooklyn, NY that will complicate your Saturday evening plans because, honestly, all of these shows are worth your time, money and energy.

Whatever you choose Saturday night, Velo Fellow will be hosting a benefit for Safe Harbor with live music from Johnny Monster and WPOS. On Sunday, Velo Fellow will help you knock of the cobwebs with a Bloody Mary or three with Little Lesley’s Honky Tonk Brunch Sunday afternoon. I have always enjoyed brunch at Velo but I suspect it will be a bit more fun with Little Lesley & the Bloodshots in attendance.

All of this makes for some decisions about what to do this weekend and is just a small part of the well over 100 bands listed on the iOnGreenville music calendar over the next five days. Check out the full list on your iOnGreenville app and start planning because we have one memorable weekend of live music ahead.

Weekend Concert Calendar

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