Downtown Beats & Eats Returns to Whirligig Park | Wide Awake
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Downtown Beats & Eats Returns to Whirligig Park

First concert is Sept. 11

Posted on August 30, 2021

Updated on September 9, 2021

Wide Awake Wilson
Matty Begs, known for high energy shows, will play at Whirligig Park Sept. 25 for Downtown Beats & Eats. Contributed photo

Matty Begs, known for high energy shows, will play at Whirligig Park Sept. 25 for Downtown Beats & Eats. Contributed photo

Hear Mac & Juice Quartet Sept. 11 at Downtown Beats & Eats. The concert series is presented at the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park. Contributed photo

Hear Mac & Juice Quartet Sept. 11 at Downtown Beats & Eats. The concert series is presented at the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park. Contributed photo

TripleWide will play at this season's first Beats & Eats event Sept. 11 at Whirligig Park. Contributed photo

TripleWide will play at this season's first Beats & Eats event Sept. 11 at Whirligig Park. Contributed photo

Matty Begs, known for high energy shows, will play at Whirligig Park Sept. 25 for Downtown Beats & Eats. Contributed photo

Matty Begs, known for high energy shows, will play at Whirligig Park Sept. 25 for Downtown Beats & Eats. Contributed photo

Hear Mac & Juice Quartet Sept. 11 at Downtown Beats & Eats. The concert series is presented at the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park. Contributed photo

Hear Mac & Juice Quartet Sept. 11 at Downtown Beats & Eats. The concert series is presented at the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park. Contributed photo

Hear Mac & Juice Quartet Sept. 11 at Downtown Beats & Eats. The concert series is presented at the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park. Contributed photo
TripleWide will play at this season's first Beats & Eats event Sept. 11 at Whirligig Park. Contributed photo
Matty Begs, known for high energy shows, will play at Whirligig Park Sept. 25 for Downtown Beats & Eats. Contributed photo

For Wide Awake

The eighth season of the Downtown Beats & Eats series is scheduled to take place in Wilson’s Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park with a total of four events: two in September and two in October.

The concerts are 4-8 p.m., Sept. 11 and 25 and Oct. 9 and 23. There’s no admission charge for the events.

Organizing partners are Gig360 Young Professionals, Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park & Museum and Historic Downtown Wilson.

“Event organizers are excited to be able to bring Downtown Beats & Eats back to the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park and Historic Downtown Wilson this year,” said event coordinator Will Robl.

“The series has continued to grow and evolve from year to year, and 2019 was our biggest and best season yet. Unfortunately, as with everything else in 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic left us to deal with a lot of unknowns.”

Robl said organizers are aware that they might need to adapt plans based on change condition with COVID-19.

“We will continue to monitor statistics and conditions surrounding the coronavirus, but we anticipate being able to proceed with the series taking place as scheduled.”

Robl said organizers are excited to be among the first events to be held within the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park since 2019 and to bring back live music to the outdoor venue

Food and beverages will be available for purchase at the concerts. An ID and wristband will be needed for alcoholic beverage purchase.

Beverage tickets are $5, and there will be no charge for wristbands (thanks to presenting sponsor Wilson Energy). Take a chair and/or blanket. No outside food or beverages please.

Sept. 11

• TripleWide had its beginnings when drummer David Daniels invited local bass guru Dale Bryce and guitarist Steven Stewart over to his house to jam back in 2008, and the three had a lot of fun and decided to form a band. Before they even played a single gig, the word got out that these three musicians were playing together. Friends and other musicians started dropping by to jam with the band during their practices. One of these friends was Whitney Pearsall, whose soulful, smoky vocals seemed a natural complement to the band’s three-piece lineup. A very open, fun, community atmosphere emerged, and TripleWide continues to embrace this mindset, frequently inviting their friends to come sit in with the band during their shows. TripleWide’s first full-length album, “Bring it on Home” was released in 2014.

• For nearly two decades, Mac & Juice have continued to make tremendous evolutionary strides from their days as a dynamic acoustic duo. Now performing as a full band, their vast stylistic range is seamlessly translated into every original song. The sound is personally described as “Jammy-Soul-Rock & Roll” or organically crafted rock music that isn’t afraid to jam out and improvise, but with a bluesy touch of soul sweetness to smooth out the edges.

Sept. 25

• With roots in Wilson and Rocky Mount, the band Matty Begs officially began in the spring of 2012. Known for high-energy live shows, catch Matty Begs and their acoustic-electric party rock at the best clubs, colleges and beaches the East Coast has to offer. Matty Begs writes original material that draws heavily upon the bands’ influences. Catchy lyrics and sing-along, party-anthem choruses inspired by the likes of Jack Johnson, Michael Franti, G Love, Donovan Frankenreiter, Jason Mraz, Mike Doughty and Sublime, leave the listener feeling good and wanting more. Live, the band also covers a wide variety of songs, new and old, and infuses them with their own funky upbeat style to encourage the audience to have fun, sing along and dance. Matty Begs has released three EPs along with the newest single “Hide Away From The World,” which was released last year. Currently the band is working on a new full length recording to be released at the end of 2021.

• With a fine blend of acoustic, reggae, alt rock and what can only be described as “her sound,” Ashley LaRue and her band reach out to the world with messages of positivity, hope and good vibes as a bonded tribe of musical virtuosos. Ashley LaRue fronts the band as a vocal powerhouse with acoustic guitar, Horace Bennett with blazin’ electric leads, Lars Hartman on drums weaving the rhythmic space, Jeremy “Bones” Rodgers with the smooth buzz of his trombone, Ralph RAS Dujour (Crucial Fiya) with the low end electric bass grooves and David Morse with psychedelic, roots and more influences with the stroke of each key.

Oct. 9

• Duck is a Raleigh-based band that plays music that’ll make you boogie. A little funky, bluesy, jazzy and a lil’ dirty.

• The Spread is a talented group originating from the Crystal Coast in 2012. Band members aspire to get their music into the ears and hearts of people all across the state and beyond. The band’s six members have a spread of genres sure to keep you on your toes and dancing all night long. The band’s first album is in the works.

OCT. 23

• Fans might remember Matt Whitley, Michael Pearson and Jay Wheeler as members of the band Easy Street. Nearly a decade after their original incarnation, the band reemerged with a new name and the addition of Michael Sargent on drums and Matt’s daughter Caroline on vocals. Street Revival performs old and new country hits with a little bit of rock thrown in.

• Greg Humphreys, Matt Brandau and Keith Robinson began performing as Greg Humphreys Electric Trio in 2014, soon after Humphreys’ move to New York City from his native North Carolina. Humphreys cut his teeth as frontman and songwriter for bands Dillon Fence and Hobex, releasing LPs for Atlantic and London Records and playing thousands of shows throughout the United States, Canada and Europe.

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