Party Country | Saul Brooks

Chive Summer Kickoff Party w/ Trick Knee duo

Sat. May 25

Noon-2 a.m.


Island Bar & Grill

North Charleston-based country songwriter Saul Brooks has two different types of roots. One is in the ’90s grunge scene, where he draws inspiration from artists like Alice in Chains. The other is in Johnson City, Tenn., the town where he grew up. “Being in a small town, there’s not a whole lot to do, and you almost know everybody,” Brooks says. “You sing about love and the parties you’ve had and friends and whatnot.” Indeed, those topics keep coming up in Brooks’ fun-loving songs, which he sings in a voice that splits the difference between Appalachian twang and alt-rock growl. But one song of his, “God Loves Me Too,” isn’t what you think it is. Brooks explains that back when he lived in Tennessee, he and the band were en route to play a memorial concert for a family who had lost a father and husband when they got a call from the town’s all-powerful preacher. “We say he had Footloose syndrome. He sort of ran the town,” Brooks says. The preacher man told them they should just turn around. “[He said] that he knew the guy personally and that he could tell us right now that he wouldn’t want us there because we play the devil’s music,” Brooks says. So the band went back home. Needless to say, Brooks wanted to write a nasty song about the preacher, but instead he took the high road. The result is a song that sounds as much like a contrite prayer as it does a sideways jab at his accuser. “Father who art in heaven/ Can you tell my mother I tried?” Brooks sings. “We all look the same through your eyes/ But they know their place and I know mine.” Touché, country boy. —Paul Bowers SATURDAY


RURAL FOLK | Laura Jane Vincent

w/ Megan Jean and the KFB

Sat. May 25

8 p.m.


Tin Roof

Laura Jane Vincent is a storyteller at heart. Her subject matter: the bewildering beauty of the rural Carolinas and the bewildering people who call the country home. “Female storytellers always caught my attention, in such a wide variety of genres, that I think they all hit me in some way, shape, or form,” Vincent says. A Greensboro, N.C.-based singer and guitarist, Vincent normally tours with just Dave Tippets on drums, but for this week’s Tin Roof show, the duo is bringing in Danny Infinger to play bass and Laura Zapp on keys. Vincent is touring in support of her recently recorded album, For a Sweetheart from the South. “It’s just a collection of songs,” Vincent humbly says of the new record. “All I really know is that it seems to be a lot of stories and songs about people who should know better or who just simply can’t help themselves.” —Brooks Brunson SATURDAY


PSYCHOBILLY | Coon Doggin’ Outlaws

Charlie Osceola

Sun. May 26

8 p.m.


The Mill

Inspired musically by the Legendary Shack Shakers, Koffin Kats, and Marty Robbins, the Coon Doggin’ Outlaws come from a small but strong psychobilly scene in South Florida. “Lyrically, we use some of those outlaw ballad sounds along with some Oi! punk in there,” says Anton Lauter, otherwise known as Top Coon Dog. “Our lyrical content is on the humorous side for the most part, but we also have some more serious songs.” And they wear some pretty swanky matching outfits, complete with bolo ties. “We actually found these bad boys at our local Walmart,” Lauter says. “As for the bolos, I made them myself out of squirrel skulls.” Check out the spooky video for the spooky song “Ready for the End” on YouTube. —Susan Cohen SUNDAY



w/ The Mobros

Wed. May 22

8 p.m.

The Sparrow

Gabe Vitek and his cohorts in the keyboard-driven world pop outfit VITEK are a positive bunch. From their peppy tunes to the band’s oft-repeated mission statement — “Think Positive. Forgive Each Other. Dance.” — these guys want to brighten your world. And when it comes to their mission statement, Vitek and company walk the walk. “It serves as a fitting mantra for the merging of the beliefs of all five band members,” says Vitek, the singer-keyboard player for the Nashville-based band. “We all have the utmost respect for each other as people and are always growing as individuals from the checks and balances of each of our strengths and weaknesses.” Vitek adds, “We aim to create uplifting rhythms and textures and focus our writing content toward words of love and empowerment, often leaving lines open to many interpretations, so that the listener can take what he or she needs.” We can dig it. And we can also dig VITEK’s electro-dance dabblings in Afro-pop and good ole sweet-16 American-style Top 40. The band’s latest single “Sunbird,” is a 16-bit mashup of Graceland-era Paul Simon and post-Kid A Radiohead. If you’re fans of either, that should leave you positively giddy. —Chris Haire WEDNESDAY