Every Monday, we help our readers get off to a musical start with five quick hits on some of the most interesting stories, sites and songs to wrap up the past 7 days and look forward to another great week:
1. News: Black Bike Week is back!
Memorial Day weekend is upon the Grand Strand and along with it comes the annual Atlantic Beach Bikefest which officially runs May 27-29 and unofficially kicks off Thursday and spills over into Monday.
This year's Bikefest, the country's largest sport bike gathering, will be sponsored by Rapper T.I.'s clothing brand A.K.O.O. (A King Of Oneself). The company will provide an outdoor stage that will host fashion shows, live musical performances and fashion makeovers, host celebrity meet and greets and the official Official Bikefest 2011 Kick-Off Party (Thursday 6-9 p.m at Myrtle Beach Mall) and will also give away a fully customized, AKOO branded, 2010 Yamaha R1.
“Our Atlantic Beach community is proud to have AKOO as our official partner for Bikefest 2011,” says Mr. William Booker, Town Manager of Atlantic Beach. “We welcome them as well as the thousands of bike enthusiasts from across the country to our community.”
In addition to the activity in downtown Atlantic Beach, the area will also host a ton of unofficial Bikefest parties. Some of the scheduled events include S.C.'s own DJ B-Lord holding down The Afterdeck for three days (http://blordatbikeweek.com/), Tequila Empire kicking off the weekend early with a party Thusday night featuring Yo Gotti and local crew CNC performing, DJ Cleve at Club Exception, 2001's PMMC Biker Bash, The Ruff Ryders Takover, Bone Thugs N Harmony at House of Blues on Sunday (Details), Grand Finale Sunday at 9th Ave. Bar & Grill (Details) and much more!
Hop over to http://www.blackbikeweek.us/ for a bunch more events and details.
2. Links: Necessary Band working toward new track
- The Necessary Band is getting ready to record a new song called "The Traveler" with Mark Bryan of Hootie and the Blowfish in his Charleston studio. Check out the details on more on TNB via this newletter.
- Prowler will be previewing it's new EP "Prowler, Pt. 2" at midnight on Tuesday via Reverbnation.
- Local rock band The IZM, who made some waves around town playing regularly between 2007-09 are regrouping for their first show since last October on June 3. Check out the details via Facebook.
- Paul Grimshaw talks about the revitalization of the Downtown music scene via Weekly Surge.
- Speaking of downtown...Hot Summer Nights Concert Series is getting ready to return June 1. Check out the entire lineup of summer shows via MyrtleBeachDowntown.com.
- See photos from last night's Billboard Music Awards here and read a recap via EW.com.
- Apparently Mick Jagger has formed a band with singer Joss Stone, reggae artist Damian Marley and Eurythmics Dave Stewart and composer A.R. Rahman. Check out the details via Paste Magazine.
3. Rants & Raves: Learning from Beach Blast!
After attending the day-long event which featured some of the biggest names in the genre including TobyMac and Skillet — who were all amazingly gracious and accessible to fans for autographs, etc. — I think it's safe to say that Christian music gets a bad rap.
Though it was standard for each artist to take a few minutes out of their set to stop playing and give an antecdote or other message praising the God they believe in, the other 90 percent of each set was purely entertainment — professional performers doing their best to entertain with big beats, catchy hooks, daring dances and flashy pyrotechnics and stage setup.
If you wanted to embrace the religious aspect of the music it was very easy to do so amongst a group of thousands of fellow believers, but if you weren't a devout follower it was very easy to look beyond the message and just enjoy the music for what it was.
These were not just cookie cutter praise bands they were rolling out for the crowd, each act had its own distinct style of modern pop, rock, hip-hop and metal music. And they beauty of it was that the majority of the thousands of attendees — some of the most considerate and pleasant concertgoers I can remember — were able to look beyond the genre (that is, the musical style) and enjoy all the artists on stage, simply because they all shared the same message.
Seems to me that the secular music community could learn a thing or two from the Christians about how to put on an event. Even if your message is a less-prophetic one such as "Support Local Music" or "Come Check out this great bar," at least take a few moments to consider bringing some variety to the shows you throw.
4. Shows: Groove Stain stops at Bourbon Street
Some mid-week events worth checking out this week:
- Fans of the Material Girl may want to head out to Legends In Concert this week as the tribute theater is hosting leading Madonna tribute artist, Kimberly Goltry, beginning tonight. She will also be joined by Elvis, Aretha, Michael, Tom Jones & Alan Jackson. For more information about Legends in Concert, visit www.LegendsinConcert.com or follow the show on Facebook.
- Atlanta-based Reggae/Rock/Hip-Hop band Groove Stain will perform Richmond, Va., group Murphy's Kids at Bourbon Street, 5307 N Kings Hwy. Wednesday beginning at 8 p.m. For more details check out Bourbon Street's Facebook Page.
- In a special appearance for Memorial Weekend, the Carolina Opry's Gilmore Auditorium will host The Temptations Revue – A Tribute Featuring Nate Evans. Witness the re-creation of one of the most legendary Motown acts of all time, featuring the fabulous Nate Evans, who sang lead for the Temptations, recognized worldwide for their silky choreography, distinct harmonies and definitive style. Live at the Gilmore Auditorium, home of The Carolina Opry and Good Vibrations. The show will run each night Thursday through Sunday. Tickets are $29.95 for adults plus tax and $15.00 for children. To reserve your seats call 800-843-6779 or book online at www.TheCarolinaOpry.com or GilmoreEntertainment.com.
- 3 Weeks Notice will perform Thursday at Pirate's Cove on 205 Main St., North Myrtle Beach. Shwo starts at 9 p.m. Check out Pirate's Cove on Facebook for more details.
5. Song of the Week: "3-Way (The Golden Rule)"
Usually, in this spot we like to feature one of the most-played songs from our personal playlists, but this week we've decided to go a different direction with something fun. "3-Way" is the latest SNL Digital Short, coming out of Saturday's 36th season finale hosted by Justin Timberlake. It features Andy Samberg and Timberlake (with a guest appearance from Lady Gaga) singing a goofy 90s throwback song on the finer points of the menage a trois. Check it out below and if you're a "little monster" yourself, you might enjoy this article on Gaga's new "Born This Way" album.