Best of the Charleston Underground – Cool, Hip and Slightly Under the Radar

Read More

Charleston has a hip scene, or is that a hipster scene?? Either way, there are some great spots and communities that promote creative integrity, innovative commentary and just a downright quiet place to call home.? It is these places that give Charleston integrity and grit.? Through the forces behind these activities and places, this city continues to flourish with a sense of individualism and raw power.

We want to provide you with the imaginative and hip Charleston that isn’t typically in the limelight, but will keep your juices flowing.

  • Improv Night at Theatre 99 – Every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, Theatre 99 on Meeting Street (Just behind the bike shop – Yes, it can be easily missed) offers some of the funniest acts in Charleston providing their spin on current events, local culture and more.? Many of the troop members have been together a long time and it shows in their timing, creativity and genuine fun they have on stage and with the audience.
  • The Unspoken Word – Poetry Slam/Open Mic – Started by the creative forces of Derek Barry and Matthew Foley, The Unspoken Word is a movement of area poets through the medium of Poetry Slams and Open Mic that offer a platform for poetic expression.? The talents range from students to veterans to seniors and beyond.? A must see in Charleston
  • Chico Feo – Some places bleed culture.? Some just kick back and give you a place of solace and relief and others just feel like home.? Chico Feo, located just off of Center Street on Folly Beach is such a place.? This converted house hosts bands, fund raisers or just a place to sit on the back porch with friends.? There isn’t a place like this and it has all the atmosphere of relaxed beach life.
  • Faculty Lounge – This isn’t a place where the teachers hang out in between classes or a stuffy place for suits to drink.? This is a cool place to drink, dance and let loose and what happens at the Faculty Lounge tends to stay there.? Its a place where gangsters, bikers and students can all co-exist in harmony.
  • Burns Alley – Their tag line is, “If you can find us, you’ll never forget us”.? That sums it up well.? Not more than a stone throw from King Street, but still hidden way in a corner alley, this college bar, that even locals and alumni call home is the place to go when King Street becomes overbearing.? It is a place that is proud of its cheap drinks and dive status.
  • Revelry Brewing – This East Side brewery has lost most of its hidden mystique because of the great beer, hot spot status and reputation, but we wanted it on our list for another reason.? What many don’t know is that this trendy indoor, outdoor spot has hosted pop up ramen nights, Purim parties, bands and fund raisers.? They offer an open arms approach to acceptance and community.
  • The Royal American – With a stage barely big enough for 4 people, let alone a full set of instruments, this bar has been witness to some of the best local and Southeast area bands around.? Not to mention, the best loaded baked potato around.
  • Elliotborough Mini Bar – If you don’t live in the Elliotborough neighborhood, you may not even know how to find this corner bar.? If you have been there, you know it can comfortably manage about 20 to 30 people.? But while inside you can find exciting events from vegan delights to poetry.

Asheville Based Indie/Folk-Rock Artist Matt Townsend Coming to Charleston this Week

January 11, 2017 (Wednesday) – Awendaw Green Barn Jam (6:00 PM)

January 12, 2017 (Thursday) –? Cory’s Grilled Cheese (James Island) (7:00 PM – 9:00 PM)


Matt Townsend is touring the southeast in support of his newly released EP, The Drifter and the Dream (part 1). Part one of a two part series, the EP is both a politically charged and introspective affair, showcasing a “breadth of creative impulses…[with lyrics] in line with the pointed fury of Bob Dylan” says the Huffington Post. He will be performing and leading a workshop at the South Florida Folk Festival (Jan 28/29) along with a dozen other tour stops. On The Drifter and the Dream, which was recorded at the world class Echo Mountain Recording Studios in Asheville, NC, “Townsend explores the modern world and all of its rough edges with this exceptional collection of songs….Like Bruce Springsteen and Woody Guthrie before him, Townsend channels in elements of folk, rock, and roots to create a great sound that doubles as a magnifying glass on his country’s pulse.” The album feature’s a host of Asheville’s surplus of musical talent (including Bill Berg, the drummer on Bob Dylan’s Blood on the Tracks). Townsend is also a featured artist on The Asheville Symphony Sessions, an album consisting of a collaboration between the Asheville Symphony Orchestra and Asheville-based recording artists. His Song “For Now We Are” was arranged by Michael Bearden (Neil Young, Michael Jackson) and is featured alongside fellow regional artists, Rising Appalachia, Steep Canyon Rangers and more. Tour dates and more information at