Pardon the bad grammar, pardner, but after the 2010 closing of the Beach Wagon, the once best-known (and for a while the only) large country music nightclub in town, many locals and visitors were lost without a boot scootin’ venue to call their own. Besides the tourist-driven, though iconic, downtown honky tonk, The Bowery, and the big theaters (Alabama Theatre, Carolina Opry, and the House of Blues) we were in short supply of live country music – but that’s changing. And while most venues with any live music at all periodically hire country acts, here’s a rundown of country you can count on –when you want it.
The Boathouse Waterway Bar & Grill, 201 Fantasy Harbour Boulevard, Myrtle Beach; 903-2628. Best known for its big Sunday afternoon outdoor rock ‘n’ roll shows, The Boathouse also caters to all-country crowds every Friday evening, with a dedicated country music night.
The Bowery,110 9th Avenue North, Myrtle Beach; 626-3445. Besides being the home of country music supergroup Alabama between 1973 and 1980, this 67-year-old bar is a true honky tonk in the heart of the downtown Myrtle Beach boardwalk district. The Bounty Hunters, with an ever-revolving line-up, plays southern rock and a lot of country music six nights per week during the main tourist season.
Block Party, Fantasy Harbour Boulevard, Waccamaw Pottery, Myrtle Beach; 903-1205. New kid on the block (sorry), Block Party opened across the street from the Boathouse in May and features country duo Ricshaw each Thursday – Sunday.
Bubba’s Love Shak, 4037 U.S. 17 Business, Murrells Inlet; 651-5850. On the Marshwalk this fun little joint is best known for late-night crowds and variety live music – but come Wednesday, it’s all country. Newcomer country act Austin-Mowery performs there periodically.
Daisy Dukes, 2701 U.S. 17, Myrtle Beach; 712-1591. “We’re a true country music venue,” said country singer and co-owner Charlie Floyd. The house band performs every night except Tuesday (Karaoke night), and Floyd joins the act each Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday. “We’re getting ready to book some national acts, too,” said Floyd. “We hope John Anderson and Junior Brown.”
Rodeo Bar & Grill, 1318 Celebrity Square, Broadway at the Beach, Myrtle Beach; 315-0120. Rodeo Bar & Grill (formerly Blarney Stones Pub, Cigar and Martini Bar) features a blend of mainstream music and country, with the all-country Josh Brannon Band performing at 10:30 p.m. every Friday and Saturday.
- Paul Grimshaw, for Weekly Surge