From today’s edition of the Columbia Free Times, my review of local songwriter Todd Mathis’ new album:
I’ll be seeing her a couple times next weekend at MerleFest, but actually interviewed bluegrass/acoustic musician Sierra Hull recently for the Columbia Free Times in advance of an appearance this week at Newberry Opera House in South Carolina. Such an interesting, well spoken artist, and a pleasure to talk to.
Six years ago I covered my first MerleFest for Country Standard Time, and I’ve gone back every year since. In addition to writing about the festival on the site and on social media, I have also indulged a hobby while watching the various performances–drawing pictures of the artists on stage. I’ve been told my ‘doodle’ drawing style resembles some of John Lennon’s artwork, which I consider a huge compliment. They’re not meant to be exact, just a scribbled/doodled impression while listening to the music. I’ll be back at it for MerleFest 2017, where you can find my coverage on Country Standard Time but also follow me on Twitter @kevingoliver and Instagram @kevinolivercolawriter, because I’ll post this year’s doodles there as the weekend unfolds. If you backtrack far enough on my Twitter feed you can see pieces from the last couple years, but I’ll save you the trouble and post some of my favorites below:
I wrote some words about the new album from legendary SC rocker Ruba Say; He will be playing Art Bar in Columbia this Saturday night and also appearing live on air with The Columbia Beet show on WUSC-FM 90.5 this afternoon.
The yearly compilation of music from South Carolina bands from SceneSC has become an annual tradition, a barometer of sorts for local music. This year’s continues the trend of introducing new and unreleased tracks from many of the artists involved, some of which will be heard here first before inclusion on a full length album of their own later.
If there’s a complaint, it’s a minor caveat that SceneSC tends to the indie rock side of things, with nary a heavy act, country crooner, jazz artist, or hip-hop MC anywhere near this. That’s their right, of course, and SceneSC has never claimed to speak for the entire South Carolina music community….but given the bully pulpit the blog/site has established it’s a missed opportunity for major segments of the scene, especially since there really isn’t an equivalent blog or site doing anything remotely similar to fill in those gaps.
Our favorite tracks: Numbtongue’s gurgly, trance-like “MosesBones”, She Returns From War’s stately, resigned yet hopeful-sounding “Fruit of the Night”, the understated grandeur of Yosef’s “Elise”, and Dylan Dickerson’s raw strummer “Seasoned Veteran.”
Yours? listen at the link below:
Columbia, SC hip-hop artist Cole Connor dropped one of my favorite records of 2016, Soda City; this week Czar Records released a slick video for one of its tracks, “Tarzan”. Complete with Grandmaster Flash lyrical nod and a message of not forgetting who you are (But thankfully no loincloths in sight), it is another reminder of how far hip-hop in South Carolina has come.
Shot and directed by The Foto Bros. LLC.
Mastered by STEF FisheyeMusic Mastering
SODA is available everywhere now.
Camden, SC born songwriter Patrick Davis once penned songs for the University of South Carolina baseball team’s national title run, and for the football team as well, so it’s only natural he come up with something for the men’s basketball team and their improbable Final Four berth this weekend. Win or lose, Davis is celebrating the achievement in song, and it’s stirring this old Gamecock alumn’s heart.