Ten Toes Up

The Windjammer

Mon. Aug. 3

A surprisingly nice-sized crowd filled the Windjammer’s main room late Monday night to check out young rock band Ten Toes Up. Based in the Pawley’s Island/Murrells Inlet area up the coast, the quartet has enjoyed better luck in recent years booking shows in the Myrtle Beach scene (I last saw them perform on a small stage at the old Hard Rock Park in MB) than in the Charleston area. The solid support and positive reactions from the audience during the band’s opening numbers obviously encouraged lead singer/guitarist B.J. Craven.

Consistently gracious on the mics, Craven and his bandmates — bassist Charles Freeman, drummer Adam Miller, and percussionist Josh Gregory — peppered the set of originals (mostly from the new album Bridges & Breakdowns) with several rock and funk standards, presumably to maintain a party-music vibe for the crowd.

A fiery rendition of “No Way Out” by the Allmans included some impressive solos, especially Gregory’s timbale/conga work. The tossed-in version of Kings of Leon’s “Molly Chambers” and the almost-clever choice of Jerry Reed’s “East Bound and Down” plodded with low-energy, though.

“We’re an original band trying to make South Carolina proud … that’s what we’re trying to do,” announced Craven half-way through the set. If they stick with their strongest, self-produced tunes and avoid the random cover band crowd-pleasers, they might just achieve that goal sooner than they expected. (myspace.com/tentoesup)

Ten Toes Up performs again in Charleston at the Pour House on Tues. Aug. 18.