OK, I’m going to say it; Kid Drew and the Brassholes is the best band on the beach.
This “best” proclamation is well deserved, easily defended and really could apply far beyond the Myrtle Beach area; the Kid and his band mates are just that good.
If you haven’t seen the band before, or it’s been a while, you owe it to yourself to catch a show, so consider this your invitation.
North Strand native “Kid” Drew Voivedich, 29, is not exactly a kid anymore, but he jokes he still gets regularly carded for Fireball shots and beer, and he earned the “Kid” name when he was ripping up local stages as a prodigious and precocious 13-year-old. Even at 17 and 18 he was working nearly full-time as a local guitarist, one that other guitarists of all ages made a point to see.
After flirting with life in Charleston, then at Legends in Concert and finally within the Nashville country music machine, Voivedich came back to the beach in 2014 and accepted a position at The Carolina Opry. Anyone whose seen him knows the Kid can play, but what about this “best band on the beach” stuff? Really?
Yes, and here’s why. Besides having an old soul and great taste in music, Voivedich says he now plays for the fun of it, for the sheer joy of musical expression, and it shows.
As I look back on my career, it’s pretty refreshing to be able to play the gigs I want to play, because I want to play them.
‘Kid’ Drew Voivedich
He’s no longer stressed about hunting down low-paying bar gigs, or touring (his last road stint was with rising country music star Kellie Pickler), and with a full-time job at The Carolina Opry, he can play late-night bar shows when he wants, and play what he wants. The same can be said for many of his bandmates, most of whom are fellow theater musicians.
“As I look back on my career, it’s pretty refreshing to be able to play the gigs I want to play, because I want to play them,” said Voivedich from his Myrtle Beach home, one the recent newlywed shares with his wife, Arielle Voivedich.
“I love Nashville,” he continued, “and enjoyed hanging with the [Kellie Pickler] band, the touring was first-class, and the hour-and-half-long shows were cool, but musically I wasn’t satisfied. I could have stayed in Nashville, picked up another road gig, but it was always just going to be that. It’s all pop-country music stuff, and I was like ‘This is supposed to be a music town. Where’s the Steely Dan, where are the cool blues clubs?’ It seemed like Broadway at the Beach.”
Currently, the Kid Drew Band performs after the Opry show lets out, every Wednesday night, at Pine Lakes Tavern in Myrtle Beach, around 10:30-ish. This “jam,” as its called, is not an open mic night, but plenty of local players who have the chops are invited to sit in, and that occasionally includes the three horn players that make up the Brassholes.
Additionally, The Kid Drew Band with The Brassholes have a standing gig the last Saturday of each month, and occasionally more often than that.
So who are these band mates and the Brassholes that I claim make up the “best band on the beach?” The line-up perfectly showcases the level of sometimes hidden talent lurking in the theaters around the greater Myrtle Beach area.
The Kid Drew Band includes Voivedich on guitar and lead vocals, Lynn Brown (drums), Kevin White (keyboards, Carolina Opry), and Kevin Hughes (music director bass/vocals, Carolina Opry).
The Brassholes features the four-piece Kid Drew band with the addition of the three-piece horn section featuring: trombonist Chris Connolly (Coastal Carolina University), David Herron (trumpet), Kenny Anderson (saxophone, Alabama Theatre), and occasionally John Anderson (Alabama Theatre), who fills in on trumpet.
If all that wasn’t enough Voivedich has enlisted the top players in town to perform theme nights at Pine Lakes Tavern where the band and guests learn an artist’s entire album of material, and perform it, sequentially. Hearing your favorite classic album come to life is a treat for all.
“In June and July we’ve been playing ‘Lynyrd Skynyrd: One More for the Road,’” he said. “We’re going to take an album like that and perform it the last Wednesday of every month, for three months. We’re talking about ‘Dark Side of the Moon,’ next, synched up to a video wall with ‘The Wizard of Oz’ showing behind us.”
Like I said, “best band on the beach.” Who else does this? No one. And who else has a seven-piece band that gets to play rock ‘n’ roll the way they want? Few that I know about.
“Every [Pine Lakes Tavern] gig, every time, is not the most amazing musical event, but we go in with the attitude of wanting to be there.”
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