Awendaw Green- A Mostly Unknown Charleston Treasure
To quote their website “Awendaw Green may just be the coolest music venue in the lo-country. A low-key and friendly environment, the concerts occur in an old barn with a professional sound technician and equipment. Bon fires, food, music, friends, networking, an old barn, even canoeing…how could it get any better? ”
I had heard about this place for a while now and made it to my first “Barn Jam” last night. What a crazy, wonderful, happy experience. It’s located down on Hwy 17 North right next to the Sewee Outpost station. Sewee Restaurant sets up a table and sells casual fare like burgers, hot dogs and sea food. Visitors can b.y.o.b. and even their own picnic if they wish. There are chairs and picnic tables scattered about but the ground is great for spreading a blanket and relaxing under the trees.
On the makeshift stage outside the “barn” you can find a cast of musicians- last night there was an acoustic set featuring a 14-year-old local girl, a visiting Brit and a man from Maryland who is visiting his second home here in town. The three were sharing the stage alternating songs and playing along with each other (having never met before). After that “artists in the round,” local blues rock band Steel Petals, led by orthopedic surgeon Blake Ohlsen, took the stage for a more plugged in electric set, and they were followed by Megan Jean and The KFB Band (originally from New York). Megan could give Florence and the Machine a run for her money with her singing pipes.
The barn jams are usually free and they just pass around a collection plate for any donations patrons may wish to give. Awendaw Green was founded by musical philanthropists – one of which is local dentist on Hwy 17 ,Eddie White. Eddie is just a music lover who wanted to provide musicians and fans a good place to meet each other and enjoy one another’s company. You find Eddie at almost every Barn Jam walking around and talking to everyone making them feel like they are at home.
The crowd is full of children running around, off leash dogs playing with each other and sniffing around the trees, and people from all over Charleston just relaxing and having a good time with their family and friends. What a way to enjoy live music- in a family backyard barbeque like environment.
If you love music and love having a great, low-key good time, be sure check out the Awendaw Green schedule and make it to the next Barn Jam.