When he was a student at Clemson University a few years back, Jeremy Theall searched for a way to get out the word about the Southeast’s music scene and the bands he loved. He initially channeled his passion for that music into a blog called Future Chord, in which he talked about the history and shows and various events in the lives of bands all over South Carolina, North Carolina, and Georgia.
But after he got out of school, Theall felt the need to expand on that blog idea, and not just for altruistic reasons.
“I was writing about bands from the Southeast because local music was really important to me,” Theall says, “but after I graduated I realized I wanted to do something more worthwhile because I couldn’t really make a living writing about music.”
So over the past five years, Theall has turned Future Chord from a blog into a concert booking, promotion, and management company, with clients ranging from the electronic dance-music duo Carpoolparty to the psychedelic folk band Brother Oliver and the indie-rock quartet Daddy’s Beemer. At any given point in the past few years, Future Chord has offered management or promotional services to nearly two dozen bands around the region, on either a temporary or long-term basis.
One of the most noteworthy events Theall has created is Future Chord Fest, an annual multiband showcase that features both his own clients and bands from the area whose music Theall enjoys. The third annual edition of Future Chord Fest will kick off Friday night at Radio Room in Greenville, and it will feature Daddy’s Beemer alongside Pure Ghost, a Greenville band that specializes in massive, My Bloody Valentine-style guitar epics; the ethereal, atmospheric music of Austin’s Slow & Steady; the anthemic Upstate prog-rockers Tides in Transit; and the spaced-out, propulsive hip-hop of Asheville, N.C.’s Spaceman Jones & The Motherships, among others.
It also marks the festival’s shift from a one-day, jam-packed schedule to a two-night event, and its move from The Spinning Jenny in Greer to the Radio Room.
“A lot of the feedback I got the last two years was that it was too exhausting to have all the bands in one day,” Theall says. “I think people liked the music, but a lot of them would’ve preferred to have more time to come see the music over two nights.”
As for the move to the Radio Room, Theall says he was very happy with the way previous festivals went at The Spinning Jenny, but he was reluctant to have the event seem exclusively tied to one venue, plus the in-house kitchen and staff at the Radio Room made it a perfect fit.
“The Spinning Jenny was great to the festival for the first two years,” he says, “but I wanted to do it somewhere else this year so that people wouldn’t think it was an exclusive thing. Fortunately, I do a lot of shows at Radio Room already, and it was a little easier to get together because I didn’t have to get food trucks or vendors or worry about finding a door person or a sound person. That helps me focus on some other things that allow me to promote it and get people excited about coming out to the show.”
Ultimately, Theall says he’ll judge the third edition of Future Chord Fest a success not just if the Radio Room has a packed house (the first two years drew 300-plus people apiece), but by how the fans and bands are able to grow from it.
“I hope people leave with a new favorite band,” he says. “And I hope some of the bands will be able to network with one another and be able to play in other towns.”
Future Chord Fest, featuring Spaceman Jones & The Motherships, Kid Trails (of Toro Y Moi), Pure Ghost, Daddy’s Beemer, Slow & Steady, Gold Wave, Tides in Transit, Curfue, Finding Freedom, Deadwyler
Where: Radio Room, 110 Poinsett Highway
When: Friday, Aug. 10, and Saturday, Aug. 11; 7:30 p.m. (both nights)
Tickets: $12 (single night), $20 (both nights)
Info: 864-609-4441, http://www.radioroomgreenville.com/