Looking for some musical fun after the bonanza that is Spoleto? How about this blast from the past.
Spyro Gyra will be here today at the Charleston Music Hall. It marks the jazz fusion group's 40th anniversary, and they are still going strong. For those of us who remember their breakthrough album "Morning Dance," it will be a magical night.
It was one of the first groups to cross over from jazz to contemporary music, just mixing sound anyway they felt. Its latest album, "The Rhinebeck Sessions," was born of all those years together. The band got together and just did what jazz musicians do: see where the music takes them. It received a Grammy nomination, so you know the guys still have their chops.
During the time they have been together, they have performed more than 5,000 shows, released 30 albums (not counting "Best of" compilations) and sold more than 10 million albums. Not bad for a lifetime achievement. And, they aren't finished yet.
Also performing with Spyro Gyra is the Yellowjackets, another jazz fusion band with its origins in the 1970s.
The doors at 37 John St. open at 7 p.m. with the show starting at 8 p.m. Price is $55-$65.
For more info, go to http://charlestonmusichall.com
Barn jam with pets
Or maybe you want to listen to a great Barn Jam and support Pet Helpers at the same time.
On June 22, Palmetto Brewing and Awendaw Green are bringing together six local bands for a day of music, food and adoptions from 2-7 p.m. at the Sewee Outpost.
Pet Helpers' mission is to help end the euthanasia of adoptable animals through low-cost spay/neuter and adoptions, but it all costs money and there's the challenge of finding suitable homes for all those lives saved. Pet Helpers is hoping to help 20 animals go home with new owners.
Eddie White, owner of Awendaw Green, has extended the invitation to participate in the Barn Jam to any bands who love animals and want to showcase their talents on the Awendaw Green stage.
Interested bands should e-mail Eddie White at email@example.com.
Admission to the event is open to all ages with a $5 donation at the door.
No coolers will be allowed, and pets on a leash are welcomed.
Guests can enjoy craft beer, wood-fired pizza and a full grill.
Participating bands include: Mozo, Katina Rose, McKenna Andrews, Matt MacKelcan, Jeff Dent and Nick Voyack.
And if you want to get out of the sun, there's an interesting show going on at the North Charleston City Gallery called "Carolina Soul: Works in Pyrography" by DeWayne Sykes.
Sykes is displaying two series of works shaped by his Lowcountry heritage, religious inspiration and childhood stories.
His featured images of Gullah-Geechee people, places and traditions are created through a technique called pyrography, which involves burning images into wood using an electrical tool or a pit fire.
The Gullah Inheritance series and The Gullah Define series are two distinct bodies of work, according to Sykes, with the latter incorporating the Gullah language and half-hidden symbolism. They hold significant meaning in the artist's life and reverence for the Gullah-Geechee culture.
"In these series, I am returning to my roots and childhood memories of being with my grandparents," Sykes explains. "They would carry my siblings and me around to visit family in Kingstree, Georgetown, and Hollywood, and we would go out into the fields and pick rice, peas, corn, watermelon, etc. In my work, the open horizon, the joining of sky and marshy lands, is my view of the Lowcountry lands that I grew up in."
What I like about Sykes is that he's a self-taught artist born and raised in Charleston. His works, which are often documentary in nature, are created in a variety of styles and mediums.
It's always interesting to see what such an artist will do, since they come to their art without the preconceived notions from traditional art training.
The work is on exhibit through the end of the month.
The North Charleston City Gallery is at 5001 Coliseum Dr. in North Charleston. It's open daily and is staffed on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
Inquiries about the artists or purchase information may be directed to the North Charleston Cultural Arts Department at 740-5854.
Reach Stephanie Harvin at firstname.lastname@example.org or 937-5557.