For Blues fans this is probably not an unusual occurrence. There are some of our friends may not like, or understand the blues and since it is not available on commercial radio (well, it is but, not easy to find) it is hard to get them to shake off their demons concerning the music and it’s style and place in their lives. So we preach and cajole and hope that one day they join us and see the difference that exists with these artists that places them atop our list.
So, here we were urging many of our friends who had not yet experienced a blues concert to come to the Street Music Festival in Port Royal SC, this past Saturday to see E.G. Kight.
With the prospect of some heavy summer rain in the Lowcountry it posed an even harder push, but sometimes the ever present one smiles upon us in funny ways. The organizers made the call early to bring it indoors, a good call at that since right before the first note the skies were cryin’ with the force of 1 million butterfly sneezes. So we wound up inside a metal shed called, appropriately The Shed, complete with air conditioning, nice bathrooms, vending and a super sound cat making it all hum in just the right way.
Gary Porter, E.G.’s drummer, starts it out with a flurry and the band breaks into a jam reminiscent of The Allman Brothers, with a heavy Chuck Leavell influence from the gifted fingers of Mike Harrell. When Ken Wynn on guitar and Johnny Fountain on bass kick it in gear they meander down uncharted riffs you can hear the crowd’s alertness rise and they build to the moment when E.G. takes the stage.
As if planned by the ever present omnipotent one, E.G. begins to sing, and a palpable gasp arose from those in attendance. Her voice and music is a mix of country and blues and a good dash of church to go along with it. It is a universal voice, it may very well be the voice of everyone collected over the ages and funneled or channeled into hers. It was that voice and the first few words she sang that turned this large metal shed into her, and the bands living room.
Doing mostly originals, which are splendid pieces of work, and some covers – including ‘I Saw Her Standing There‘ – she took everyone to the church of the Blues. There has been a lot of talk here in South Carolina (and US) about healing and Ms. Kight and band made much headway in that area via their performance. The audience was right there, on every note, pause and stop. The light had been shown, and is now followed by the congregation and I do believe that there are now many more Blues fans in the vicinity of Port Royal, Bluffton and Beaufort SC.
It really is that easy just get them to a show – a good show. There is something within the Blues that makes it the music of the people, and it is present in the artists that play it for us. Her stage presence, as well as the bands, accomplished what volumes of books and countless hours of recordings could never do – show people the light that emanates from within the music.
After a short break, where folks flocked to meet her and band, and purchase CD’s and some of her most excellent photos. But to also meet her and learn more about the music. Their second set was of the night was rollicking as often as it was awe inspiring. Leaving to a standing ovation, all you could hear from the crowd was how wonderful they were and how many of them never knew that the Blues could be like this and that they wanted more.
Our friends by the way, danced, clapped, spoke praise about them and clamored to meet her as well. Most common was “Oh my they were so good, how come I don;t know about this band”, along with “Everyone of them are great musicians, how can they play at a free show”. I offered some thoughts and urged them to seek out the music everywhere, internet, streaming, local radio, public radio and in the papers.
For in the giving you shall get, in the teaching you will be taught, and in the Blues it all starts with you. Thank you to the town of Port Royal, SC for keeping the music alive.
To see some super snaps from the epic performance please visit
Love, Peace & Chicken Grease
Where Blues Thrives
Photos: Leslie K. Joseph, Blues411