What’s Up, CLT Scene & Beyond?
Life is a little more active these days, once again with a bustling daily life in one of the biggest epicenters between Richmond and Columbia. As such, getting out, in my view, has to be essential, just as it was a sort of painful process for us all regressing into an almost opposite state of the introvert lifestyle (unless that’s your thing, then more power to you). Fortunately, especially in the Queen City, the return is always easier with the residents that create the energy of the city internally, and for those that bring it back constantly, returning like funky boomerangs.
In both entries for this week, we proudly present for you reasons why taking a peek out might be a more awesome idea than you think, both in the loud space and on calmer streets.
– Jonny G, Editor/Writer, RF20XX
BadCameo & Okey Dokey at Lenny Boy Brewing – 6/12/2021
Part 1: BadCameo
When I say 2021 is the year of the Reunion, I’m not just half-speaking here.
Back in 2020, before we all knew what was ahead, I’d reached out to a group I’d never heard of before they hit The Evening Muse later in the week with a review of one of the most entrancing EP’s on the face of the planet; Neon Souls, by the band of brothers that call themselves BadCameo. Automatically, we hit it off as kindred off the stage, and with this absolutely warm trio, it’s not hard at all to see why the music feels the way it does when you talk with them.
Unfortunately, as fate would have it for them, Lando, Geoff, and Dan decided to chart new territory and grow out of their NC roots, relocating to Florida and becoming the new kids in another scene, while in the middle of a pandemic. It always kind of sucks when familiar faces are off somewhere else for a time, but in 2020, it could at least be reasoned out that everyone was more or less in the same situation.
There’s the other thing about distance though; the heart grows fonder, and if the Funk Train is coming, you get your ticket and ride it out while its around town. I couldn’t think of a better way to start concert season, or get reacquainted to the world, than to jam out with the trio that always brings the party, both in their ways and in their music.
Part 2: Okey Dokey
Saturday, much like most of Charlotte’s awesome Spring-Time moods, started out a bit sunny before deciding to drench the Queen City and all its residents. Never predictable, honestly, but when it comes to shows, specifically in this case for Okey Dokey, playing the Head-Lining role, the love sticks around and everyone fights threw the elements to get that serotonin, on & off the stage.
Both bands got the brunt of it, but Okey Dokey ended up having to play through it, pitted against a time-wall, but even with the issues persisting, they made it an amazing set nevertheless. When it poured momentarily halfway through, fans donned umbrellas & reflective covers to show their support of the traveling crew.
I have to be honest about something; occasionally, I’m not able to sit down to really get to know what I’m in for with every band I see, which is a double-edged sword. While OD put on an awesome show, I scrambled a bit to check out the latest tracks, but anyone knows how that’s not the way. The following week, I went to right my wrong, so here’s a bit about their 2019 album, “Tell All Your Friend”;
Atmospheric in its entirety, the album shows off Okey Dokey’s ability to weave in a dream-like aesthetic, complete with synths that bring on a whistful Motown quality. The influences of the 50’s & 60’s are incredibly evident, with a modernizing that makes the music OD’s own. “Modern Chemistry” & “When They Get Older” stand out in how the vocals entice the listener, drawing all in like a soothing Siren call, working perfectly alongside the rest of the band’s relaxing instrumentals. Spend an afternoon on this one, and you might wonder where the time went.
Green Life Art Pop-Up – 6/13
Part 1: The Art Pop-Up
Sunday ended up being a sublime afternoon in front of the Green Life Remedies, around the corner of Mint and Penman St., where at the event, we got to kick it a bit with @xorexii, @jano_ryusaru, @marcusburkeartistry, and ATL’s @jigzart while also just quietly observing each work on their particular styles.
If you pay particular attention to the events always on rotation in Charlotte, these aren’t unfamiliar faces out in the crowd. Each of these artists consistently put in the time to grind and display their work, contributing to many of the murals local residents see around the city. Knowing the faces from the people we live amongst is important, and just being there during the limited hours made it a calm setting for anyone curious enough to walk over was greeted to a more intimate chat with the group working in plain sight. It felt much more natural, and might make one rethink for a moment the idea of touring an indoor gallery with how quiet it could get at times.
Part 2: As We Were Leaving
As we started to part ways for the day, the roar of engines suddenly called out down our way; what none of us saw coming is in the way @queen_city_can_am_ryderz rode in force down the street and captured our attention and threw us completely off our guard. The big reveal? They’d come in force, all with the mission of showing some love to this group of creators. There’s still no words this writer can put on the feeling we must have all had, like a scene at the end of a Hollywood Blockbuster where the cavalry pops in at the right moment to turn the tide.
What still gets me to this day is how did they know? Who got the info to them? Maybe that just needs to stay a mystery, honestly speaking, because with out we felt, there was a bit of a magic touch in play, and why spoil the magician’s secret, right? One thing I can say though; No matter how isolated you might think you are putting creativity out into the world, there’s always eyes out there looking at what you do. Much love & thanks to the members & organizers of the group, and shout-outs to each of you that hung out for the short while.
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