From the editor’s desk for May 2, 2013

May 1, 2013 

Summertime blues? No way!

I don’t go to as many concerts as I used to, what with advancing age, dwindling finances and increased demands on my leisure time being a husband and father, and homeowner.

But I pick and chose my spots and still get to a few, such as last Saturday night’s kick-ass James McMurtry show at Dead Dog Saloon (which we apprised you of in last week’s cover story).

Folks may lament the demise of the concert experience – and it certainly isn’t what it was for me personally say back in the ‘90s, but we’ve still got plenty of entertaining and interesting shows that are routed here through our somewhat remote seaside locale.

Still, there are plenty more shows that I’m interested in that I don’t wind up attending for various reasons, among them the cost, the distance, the day of the week, etc.

For instance, I am very interested in checking out the Palmetto State’s Band of Horses on Sunday at the House of Blues, but it’s on the opposite end of the Strand from my crib, and on a Sunday night when I’m usually winding down the weekend’s activities and trying to get ready for a new work/school week.

I’m sure that one of the main prohibitive factors for many of you is the cost – tickets can be expensive, such as Darius Rucker’s recent HOB show where ticket priced exceeded $100 and Alabama’s recent return to The Alabama Theatre where some tickets were going for $300. And then you throw in the cost of drinks, fuel, and paying for a taxi if you’ve had too many cocktails.

But that’s one of the great things about the concert scene here at the beach – for every over-priced show, there’s a free one of equal merit. See the aforementioned McMurtry show at Dead Dog – there was no cover charge for an artist that you’d have to pay $12-$15 to see at a comparable venue in Jackson, Miss. on Friday.

What other musical gems are headed our way as the weather hopefully warms up for good?

Glad you asked (even if you didn’t), because once again, we’re rolling out our annual Summer Concert Preview, one of our few recurring cover story themes.

And this year, it’s a slightly different animal as in the past we have picked a dozen must-see shows to grace our shores – we’re going with a baker’s dozen – 13 - for the Summer of ’13 if you will.

And we dispatched seasoned entertainment correspondent Christina Knauss to sift through the voluminous listings of gigs coming to the Grand Strand now through September to find the cream of the crop, the most titillating, sometimes the most kitschy, and the you-better-do-this-one-while-you-have the chance shows, and you can read the results in this week’s cover story.

As in previous years, we tried to spread the love around representing different genres, from blues to R&B, and hip-hop to indie rock, country and Americana; and we cast our net to various venues, from Murrells Inlet to Main Street in North Myrtle Beach (and a few that didn’t respond to our inquiries as well).

We also took into account the frequency acts have played along the Grand Strand – i.e., if they play here four times a year, it’s most likely not going to make the cut.

As we got an earlier jump on this annual preview than previous incarnations we realize it’s technically not even summer yet, and inevitably some concerts we would have included in our must-see list will be announced and booked in the coming days and weeks. But them’s are the breaks…

You may disagree with our picks and think we omitted some others that are worth consideration, but that’s OK, this is entirely a subjective affair (And feel free to send us a note or letter about it and we’ll print it).

Our only objective is to give you enough detailed information for you to make an informed decision – and perhaps pique an interest in something (or someone) you didn’t know about, or didn’t know was coming to rock the Grand Strand this summer.

Kent Kimes, Editor

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