Beach Music Book Author to Speak in Calabash, NC

Author Howie Thompson will discuss his new book, And the Bands Played On at Sunset River Marketplace art gallery in Calabash, N.C.  The presentation is part of the gallery’s ongoing Coffee With the Authors series. According to Thompson the book, which features some 60-plus bands, deejays and industry notables, tells the story of beach music from many different points of view.

Carolina beach music developed from various musical styles of the 40s, 50s, and 60s. It includes a wide variety of musical genres and influences, ranging from big-band swing instrumentals to the more raucous sounds of blues/jump blues, jazz, doo-wop, boogie, rhythm and blues, reggae, rockabilly, and old-time rock and roll.

Beach music is closely associated with the style of the swing dance known as the shag or the Carolina shag, which is the official state dance of both North Carolina and South Carolina.

Thompson begins his project by taking the advice of local club owner H. Lee Brown: to talk to legendary Charlotte, N.C. vocalist Billy Scott, who passed away in November 2012. Conversations with Scott provided ideas, experiences and invaluable insights, which served as a perfect springboard for Thompson’s book.

From there, he goes on to share stories of legends, friends, the many men and women, and the bands behind the music.  And The Bands Played On is a treasure trove of historical facts, musical culture and information.

Howie Thompson is also the author of Fat Harold: Legendary King of Shag and several sports books. He was an award-winning coach, earning three consecutive Adidas/NSCAA Regional Coach of the Year awards, two high school and youth state sportsmanship awards.

The Coffee With the Authors event at Sunset River Marketplace will be Thursday, May 2 from 10 to 11 a.m. Coffee, tea and breakfast treats will be served. The presentation is free, but seating is limited so reservations are required. Call the gallery at 910.575.5999 or send an email to lassiter@sunsetrivermarketplace.com

Sunset River Marketplace showcases work by approximately 200 North and South Carolina artists, and houses some 10,000 square feet of art work in virtually every genre. Custom framing, painting and pottery classes and art workshops are also offered through the gallery. Since opening its doors in 2002, Sunset River Marketplace has supported not only the visual arts, but literary and performing arts, as well. It has become a popular community center and art hub for both N.C.’s Brunswick County and nearby Horry County, S.C.

Sunset River Marketplace is located at 10283 Beach Drive SW, Calabash, N.C. Regular hours are Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information call 910-575-5999or visit the website: http://www. sunsetrivermarketplace.com.

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