ELIZABETHTOWN — Under a sky filled with thick clouds that kept the hot rays of sunshine at bay, the finale of the Summer Sounds Concert Series brought Blackwater Rhythm & Blues Band to the stage at the Cape Fear Farmer’s Market in downtown Elizabethtown on Thursday.
As the cooler breezes started to waft through and the crowd began to build, the well-known sounds of the band from Clarkton filled the air.
Blackwater Rhythm & Blues Band, which will also be a feature performer at the upcoming Dublin Peanut Festival, unleashed a myriad of their own beach music hits with a mix of country and soulful ’70s sounds that got the crowd to its feet and many out to the dancing area in front of the stage.
Jill and Buddy Bordeaux of White Oak missed the first three Summer Sounds concerts, but managed to get a front-row seat Thursday night.
“We saw it on the website that this band would be here and thought it would be a nice night out,” Jill said. “We’ve never heard this band before but we really like them.”
Blackwater Rhythm & Blues Band’s playlist included such hits as “Deeper,” “Carolina Girls,” Lady Soul,” “Boogie Shoes,” “Shake Your Booty,” “Brick House,” “Uptown Funk,” “Rock Me,” “Me and Mrs. Jones,” “My Girl” and many more. The group also unveiled a new single from a CD that is scheduled for release in November titled “Dance Tonight” — a song that is No. 1 in the Carolinas, No. 5 in New York and No. 7 in Dallas.
“Whoever would have thought that a band from Bladen County would have a No. 1 song?” asked band member Greg Elkins.
Many of the vocals on Thursday featured the voice of Kendrix Singletary, and most of the younger folks in the audience knows the baritone voice and silky saxophone of former East Bladen High Assistant Principal Fred Cook.
For the second straight Summer Sounds Concert Series event, the estimated crowd easily pushed or exceeded the 700 mark — vaulting the four-event series past 2,500.
“When the crowd comes out like this, it really thrills me,” said Dawn Maynard, executive director of the Elizabethtown-White Lake Area Chamber of Commerce, which organized the Concert Series. “People have come from all over to support these concerts, and I just can’t say enough about the sponsors we’ve had, the quality of music and the fantastic facility the town has provided us.”
Maynard added that there was little doubt a Summer Sounds Concert Series would be organized for next year.
“I feel pretty confident about that,” she said.
— W. Curt Vincent can be reached by calling 910-862-4163.