[image-1]HIP-HOP | Charleston Hype
Sat. Dec. 3
8:30 p.m.
The Purple Buffalo

Black Dave’s monthly Charleston Hype hip-hop showcase gets a twist this weekend with the host turning the show into a cypher — a #supercypher to be exact. He says, “#supercypher is an all-night, large-scale event in which the attendees engage in a cypher, where the DJ plays a series of beats and the mic is passed from one person to the next to rap on the beat.” Rapping is open to anyone in the building; just find the host and let him know you want in on the action. “Cyphers will be split into several blocks with breaks for music and dancing,” Black Davenports says. Besides being open to all, the other #supercypher ground rules are: Don’t rap too long — “give us a hot 16 [bars] and get out.” Rule three: Host is king. And rule four: Have fun. “Meet someone new, especially if they fire.” Charleston Hype, a local cultural/lifestyle website launched by Black Dave, will hold its showcase at new music-art venue the Purple Buffalo (2702 Azalea Drive), which had its grand opening two weeks ago. The #supercypher will be co-hosted by hip-hop artist Alan Fame (a.k.a. Manny Houston) and his brand new event-planning business BigBadBetter.
—Kelly Rae Smith

[image-3]ELECTRO POP | Rico & Miranda
Grace Joyner, Matt Lohan
Sun. Dec. 4
9 p.m.
The Royal American

Rico & Miranda come around whenever SUSTO’s back home from the road, and that’s because the band is fronted by SUSTO pianist Corey Campbell and bassist, Jenna Desmond. Together they create a groove Campbell describes as somewhere between Blondie and Feist. The two met at CofC a few years back and began making music together, making their debut at King Dusko’s last hurrah in August of last year. As for recordings, Rico & Miranda have cool things in store soon. “Though touring full time with SUSTO, we’ve found time to start recording with Wolfgang Zimmerman, and you can expect to hear an EP or album in 2017,” Campbell says. At Sunday’s show, the couple will be joined by guitarist Clay Houle, who’s also one-third of Johnny Delaware’s new band the Artisanals, and Brave Baby’s Zimmerman on drums. —Kelly Rae Smith

[image-2]SOUL | Black Diamond
Tues. Dec. 6
9 p.m.
The Commodore

Meet Black Diamond — a powerhouse group fronted by Christian Smalls, a soulful, charismatic singer whose voice has lately been knocking out local audiences on the regular. The band — also comprising guitarist Paul Quattlebaum, bassist Tony Cobins, and drummer Shelton Desaussure — formed in 2015 and has been playing a unique blend of funk, R&B, rock, and pop to dancing crowds ever since. With a repertoire that covers everything from Aretha Franklin and the Beatles to Adele, Bob Marley, and MGMT, Black Diamond always puts their own fresh twist on old favorites. Smalls is currently working on her first solo project, but in the meantime you can catch the magic of the full band this and every Tuesday night in the historic space of the Commodore. —Kelly Rae Smith

[image-4]AMERICANA | Don Merckle & the Blacksmiths
w/ Nash Rambler & the Spare Parts
Fri. Dec. 2
9 p.m.
The Sparrow

Charleston’s Don Merckle and the Blacksmiths plan to spend some time working on new material this holiday season so they can hit the ground running in the new year. “In the meantime, I’ve completed a solo album entitled The Ballad of Lincoln Wray,” Merckle says. “It’s a concept record based on the life of my grandfather, a Korean war hero. I recorded it with a group of incredible jazz musicians out of Columbia, and it will be released in the spring of 2017 on Jangly Records.” Calling his solo sound Americana-blues-jazz, Merckle will perform this week with Nash Rambler & the Spare Parts, a new local classic rockabilly/honky-tonk group made up of the Defilers’ vocalist/guitarist Arleigh Hertzler, vocalist/guitarist Jason Brachman (also a Blacksmith), drummer Pat Queen, vocalist Prisha Hertzler, and upright bassist Todd “Hoolie” Hutzler. —Kelly Rae Smith friDAy

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