This post is brought to you in partnership with Uptown Charlotte Parks. All opinions are our own.
Mecklenburg County Park & Recreation’s Summer Sizzle Music Series is in full swing this weekend in Uptown Charlotte. Friday, Aug. 9, it’s Roots and Americana tunes to fill the night and get your feet moving, with the Sounds of Summer Music Series at First Ward Park. On Saturday, Aug. 10 in Romare Bearden Park, The Bearden Music Series will carry you away to another place and time with the soulful rhythm of blues.
‘Sounds of Summer’ Aug. 9 at First Ward Park
Dates: Friday, Aug. 9
Time: 7–10 p.m.
Park locale: First Ward Park, 301 E. 7th St.
Performing: Brett Dennen with Emily Sage
Brett Dennen: For the past ten years, Brett Dennen — with his poet’s perspective, off-kilter vocals, insane sense of humor and limitless musical freedom — has turned “dancing like no one’s watching” into a lifestyle. As a songwriter, performer, watercolor artist, and environmental conservationist and outdoorsman, the shows he performs and the events he hosts generate more than just good vibes. His greater impact has been to gather like-minded music fans together to consistently try to make the world a better place.
‘Bearden Music Series’ Aug. 10 at Romare Bearden Park
Date: Saturday, Aug. 10
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Park locale: Romare Bearden Park, 300 S Church St.
Performing: Blues — Eric Gales with special guest Mr. Sipp
One of the best, if not the best guitar player in the world”Joe Bonamassa
“He is absolutely incredible”Carlos Santana
“How Eric Gales isn’t the hugest name in rock guitar is a total mystery”Dave Navarro
“This guy could be the best player on Earth”Mark Tremonti
Growing up in a religious household, his brothers Eugene and Manuel used to blast out Jimi Hendrix, Cream, Muddy Waters, Blue Cheer, Albert King, John Lee Hooker, King’s X and Stevie Ray Vaughan. Whilst their mother was at church and little Eric was aged just 4 , he was soaking it all up. This is where he had his incredible grounding of blues, hard rock and psychedelia. Naturally right handed, Eric learned his distinctive left-handed upside-down playing from his older brothers Eugene, his ‘mentor,’ and Manuel, known professionally as Little Jimmy King, who Albert King referred to as his “adopted” grandson.
His talents caught the eye of Elektra Records, who released his debut album, “The Eric Gales Band,” in 1991 when he was only 16 years old. The band was included Eric, his older brother Eugene and drummer Hubert Crawford. “Picture of a Thousand Faces” followed in 1993, then Manuel Gales (aka Little Jimmy King) joined his two brothers for 1995’s “Left Hand Band” as The Gales Brothers. Over the next few years he worked on various projects including performing as Lil E with Hip Hop collectives Prophet Posse and Triple 6 Mafia.
Don’t let summer pass you by without humming along to top-notch entertainment of these two great performers at a great price: FREE. With food trucks and local brews at the ready, all you have to do is grab a chair, bring your toe-tapping shoes and show up ready for a good time.
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