If you go
WHAT: Lowcountry Blues and Jazz CruisesWHEN: Tonight, Mon., Tues., Thurs., June 2, 3, 4, 6WHERE: Blues cruises aboard the Carolina Queen depart from City Marina, 17 Lockwood Drive, at 7 p.m. (boarding starts at 6:30 p.m.); Jazz cruises aboard the Spirit of Charleston and the Spirit of Lowcountry depart from Fountain Walk Dock at Aquarium Wharf at 8 p.m. (boarding starts at 7:30 p.m.)COST: $26, $23 seniors and students (Blues cruises); $25 (Jazz cruises)MORE INFO: www.piccolospoleto.com; (866) 811-4111
It’s really two tickets for the prices of one,” said pianist John Tecklenburg.
He was speaking of the Piccolo Spoleto jazz cruises, which offer both good music and nice views.
“We get to go out and play on the water and enjoy the scenery and sunsets,” Tecklenburg said.
A different cruise features blues.
“It’s really a unique event,” said Andy “Smoky” Weiner, a local musician and event organizer. “It’s fun. It holds a 150 people. It’s like a party out there.”
Piccolo Spoleto also has scheduled two jazz performances at Halls Chophouse, one featuring The Lyndsey Goodman Jazz Trio, the other presenting the Joe Clarke Trio.
The two-hour cruises, four jazz and four blues, begin tonight.
On the blues side, Louisiana vocalist Shelly Waters, the “Swamp Pop Princess,” brings a bit of the bayou to the Lowcountry. A one-man band from Savannah, Jeff Beasley & Chuck “The Cat” Morris, mixes blues and boogie. Shrimp City Slim is a duo with Charleston roots. Juke Joint Johnny and Lucky Man Beall will play some honky-tonk selections.
On the jazz side, the New Franklin Ashley Jazz Quintet will play classics from some of the greats and include some vocal numbers. The eight-piece Gennaro Thursday Night Band will present arrangements of classic jazz tunes from the swing and bop periods. Lonnie Hamilton with John Tecklenburg & Friends is a five-piece band that will share the stage with vocalist Tony Burke. The series closes out with the New South Jazzmen from New Orleans, six musicians performing songs from the 1920s and 1930s.
Jazz on Sundays at the Chophouse provides a land-based alternative to the music cruises. On June 2, The Lyndsey Goodman Jazz Trio fuses jazz, funk and blues. The Joe Clarke Trio performs songs from the Great American Songbook on June 9.
Christina Riley is a Goldring Arts Journalist from Syracuse University.