The Rising Tide, a party band with a style self-prescribed as Lowcountry soul, will celebrate their one-year band anniversary with a show at the Commodore on Thurs. Dec. 27. The supergroup of musicians have cultivated their throwback sound in between playing and touring with others bands. Keyboardist Paul Chelmis plays with alt-pop Human Resources, and guitarist Christian Chidester rocks with Brave Baby. Drummer J. Tides, lead singer Charlotte Laird, and bassist Dr. Z play together in the Give and the Take.

“This show is the culmination of a year of building our set list and building our show. It’s finally really ready to rock and roll this spring with some weddings. It’s gonna be fun,” said drummer J. Tides. “We work between tour schedules. We’ve been scaling it up over the past year. Doing a couple bar gigs to get our chops tight and our show perfected.”

The Rising Tide takes your proverbial party band covering your favorites from the past 60 years and strips it down — no iPads with lyrics, no backing tracks. “We start with the instruments. We study the sounds, the tone, and playing style of each instrument and musician on the original track,” says Tides. “Where our talent and creativity shines is through our medleys, mashups, and sweet song transitions that keep the dance floor alive.” They aren’t interested in making people group-dance, thankfully.


The band is built to showcase Laird’s vocals, and their sound exudes the analog warmth of the ’60s and ’70s, says Tides. “We use the most vintage, yet reliable, gear that is available,” he says. “We lay it all on top of a sweet oriental rug that really ties the room together.” (Dude, nice.)

Tides and Laird are obsessed with all-things Motown. When the idea to collaborate on a party band came alive, they wanted to do justice to the era, which required crossing paths and putting heads together with other Charleston musicians, Tides says. He feels like the soulful songs resonate with a Charleston audience. “The Temptations, Otis Redding, and Marvin Gaye can still just give you that familiar feeling, wherever you are.”

You will definitely hear other decades. They’re all over ’80s, ’90s and 2000s pop. These guys have major reserves to pull from. “As music fans, seasoned musicians, and borderline music geeks, we have had a blast really peeling back the layers and digging in to the songs and sounds that have shaped popular music of past decades.”

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