Southern Avenue Plays Rock The Block In Charleston


Grammy nominated band Southern Avenue is heading to Charleston this weekend to Home Team BBQ for a charity event, Rock the Block, at the downtown location. The annual street party benefits HOGS FOR THE CAUSE and features award winning chefs, craft cocktails, a kids area, as well as a special VIP section with an open bar and tasty treats. HOGS FOR THE CAUSE offers financial support and other support to families dealing with pediatric brain cancer.This year's band lineup includes The Pink Stoners, Travers Brothership, and headliner Southern Avenue. 

We got a chance to speak with Southern Avenue about their diverse background and how they came together to create a highly successful blues band. 

You guys are from around the world. How did you all land in Memphis and come together to form your band?
SA- Most of us grew up in Memphis. Our bass player, Evan, is originally from Richmond, VA and Ori Naftaly our founder is originally from Israel.
Your music has been described as “authentic Memphis Blues”. How did you develop your style, and did working with legendary Stax Records have any influence over that?

SA- That’s a nice compliment! We tend to not think in terms of genres, more so in terms of what we want to say and how to best capture that idea in our music. What comes out is always unknown. But yes, we all grew up listening to Memphis music and that is rooted in everything we do. 

Life has been pretty rough over the past couple of years with COVID. How have you been spending your time?
SA- We made a record at the end of 2020 and beginning of 2021. We wrote a lot of songs and did our best to get our life together after years of being on the road for 300 days a year. Suddenly everything stopped so it gave us time to reflect.
Since you have started touring again, where are some of your favorite spots? 
SA- Playing in Cancun with Widespread Panic and many other awesome artists at Panic en La Playa just a month ago was definitely a highlight. Amazing fans and the scenery was epic. 
What should we expect when we see you live?
SA- We like to think that we are always true to ourselves no matter what. We are genuine people who care about spreading good energy around the world. We use our platform to bring people together and to enlighten those who need to hear what we have to say.
You released your latest album recently and have worked with some of the biggest studios in the country, as well as top producers and have even been nominated for a Grammy in 2019 for “Best Emerging Artist”. How did it feel to be working with iconic musicians like Jason Mraz, Cody Dickinson, and producer Steve Berlin for  BE THE LOVE THAT YOU WANT ?
SA- It was an amazing experience! Writing with Jason and Michael Goldwasser was fun and interesting. Producing the record with Steve was a great time and I’d like to think we all learned so much from this journey.
Can you describe what happened behind the scenes in the studio while recording?
SA- We are all very focused — never enough time and always too much to do. Ideas to try; paths to take that lead you to some amazing places but also can lead you to useless material that is just nonsense. All of this experimenting happend in the studio. We had a great crew with us that let us shine and be the best version of ourselves.
We have heard that you find the best time to write is right after you finish another album. Why is that?
SA- Because you are free of any materialistic reasons to write music. It’s just a time where everyone is so focused on the current release so it lets you experiment with new song ideas without the need to provide demos by a specific date. If that makes sense!
The band has welcomed a new baby over the pandemic. Has that inspired new music, or are you trying to get more rest when you can? 
SA- We are more inspired then ever! In every way. 
What would you like to do next? Do you have another album currently in the works, and who do you hope to work with next?
SA- We are writing, we are planning. But, we have so much more to discover within the songs on Be The Love You Want. We are so excited to share these songs with the world on stage, so we aren’t focused on a new album at all. We are focused right now on songs from the new album and how to bring them to life on stage in the best way possible. There’s a lot to discover!
Finally, please tell us your favorite southern dishes that you hope to see from the chefs at Home Team BBQ when you are in Charleston. We have some of the best food in the country here. I think you guys will love it.
SA- We can’t wait to eat everything that they will serve us! We will make sure to roll in hungry! 

What: Rock The Block
Where: Home Team BBQ, 126 William St, Charleston, SC
When: Saturday, February 26th, 11-6
How much: $10 donation, VIP $200 includes a unique VIP lounge, food, open bar (party responsibly!)

Contact to make additional donations.

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