Oct 19 2015

Folly Beach Jazz Series Part 2

In celebration of the 80th Anniversary of George Gershwin’s play written on Folly Beach, we will offer the Best in Jazz as our second part in our Folly Series. Porgy and Bess, an opera written while Gershwin was visiting Folly Beach, was originally written in 1934 and ultimately performed for the first time in New York City on September 30, 1935. Not immediately popular, the opera later became one of the most prolific and popular plays to be performed of all time. Its style has become known as “folk opera”, as the lyrical prose delivers a folk tale in operatic form. Gershwin stated in a New York Times article,  “Porgy and Bess is a folk tale. Its people naturally would sing folk music. When I first began work in the music I decided against the use of original folk material because I wanted the music to be all of one piece. Therefore I wrote my own spirituals and folksongs. But they are still folk music – and therefore, being in operatic form, Porgy and Bess becomes a folk opera.” One of the most recognized songs from the opera is Summertime and has been performed by renowned artists such as Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, Norah Jones, Janis Joplin and Annie Lennox. Remember Porgy and Bess here.

Jazz music on Folly Beach has evolved over the years and peaked in the mid-40’s when big bands visited and performed on the old fishing pier. A Jazz Ensemble from Charleston’s Jazz Orchestra has made Folly its home over the past several years and has held Sunday performances at the Grill and Island Bar. Recently, the troupe moved venues and may now be found entertaining visitors as they sip cocktails and enjoy delicious entrees at Locklear’s from 8-11pm on Sunday evenings.

Jazz on the Edge, LLP initiated the first Folly Jazz Festival in November, 2014 with a huge lineup and intended to bring back the big band experience to the pier. However, weather precluded that from happening. On November 7th and 8th, 2015, the 2nd Festival hopes to fulfill that dream with an experience this generation will never forget. Starr Atcheson, founder and director of the event, has developed a grand event that will be completely free to the public, and plans to celebrate the rich history of the genre will span several locations. Acts to be included in this year’s event are as follow:

The Festival organizers have also organized scholarship opportunities for students looking to participate in jazz camps in 2016. Interested students ages 14-20 who have two years of music study are invited to apply through their school band directors. Students selected for the scholarships will be invited to play at this year’s festival. More information may be found at Jazz on the Edge, LLP’s website.

Festival Lineup

Saturday, November 7
Folly River Park

11:00 Opening Ceremonies
11:30 Charleston’s own Kings of Jazz
2:00 Dave Morgan Vibes and Vocals
4:00 Charleston Southern University Jazz Band
6:00 Gino Castello

Locklears Beach City Grill Stage
on The Folly Pier

1:00 The Mike Frost Band
3:00 Charlton Singleton and Contemporary Flow
5:00 Tony Monaco and Howard Paul
8:00-10:00 The Festival Big Band ( ticketed event )
7:00 -10:00 Planet Follywood presents
Bobbie Storm
10:00 – 1 Late Night Jazz @ Loggerheads with Luminous Four

Sunday, November 8
Locklears Beach City Stage
on the Folly Pier

11a-1p – It’s a A Be Bop Brunch (ticketed event )
2:00 A Tribute to Chet Baker featuring Jon Thornton
4:00 The Ladies of Jazz featuring Patience Clements
6:00 The Cobblestone Quartet

Folly River Park

1:00 The Charleston Jazz Orchestra
3:00 The V-Tones
5:00 The Charleston School of the Arts Big Band
7:00 Scholarship Presentations
8-10 pm Finale Featuring Tony Monaco and Howard Paul immediately followed by Celebration Jam




Bob Hart Author

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