Last Thursday I was invited to play a few songs for the “Keith Miller and Friends” music night at a fantastic coffee shop in Summerville known as The Single Smile Cafe. Caroline and I met Keith a few months ago while busking downtown on Second Sunday and have run into him continually since then while playing on the street and at guitar concerts, and finally got the chance to join him at his monthly event last week.

The Single Smile Cafe is a wonderful little place where all of the most talented guitarists in Charleston seem to flock to. I met some of the most gracious and welcoming individuals there. In a spirit true to the name of the cafe, all the people greeted me with a genuine smile, the sort that makes you feel like you’ve known them for ages, like meeting an old friend from a different life.

The talent I found there wasn’t the run of the mill, dime a dozen kind. Nope, these guys take interest in the kind of real musicianship that takes persistent work and careful thought in a disciplined fashion. I was honored to be invited to join this group of musicians as they shared their talents.

I watched everyone play before it was my turn. While I’m the kind of person who always wishes I had played as well as the previous guy, I realized when the other musicians responded positively to my pieces that many of them also felt the same about me. The regulars form a supportive group in which everyone appreciates each other, which fosters friendship and sharing.

At the end of the night, I had a bit more time to mingle with the folks and was invited to a monthly guitar party at one of the guitarist’s houses the following Saturday. We had pizza, performed for each other, and a had a good time. I’m looking forward to building friendships with these other talented musicians and learning from them!

Here are some photos taken by photographer Mark Melcher at the guitar party on Saturday.

Single Smile Cafe even invited Caroline and me back to do our own show next week. Here’s the event info! Hope to see you at this great venue!

  • Saturday, October 5, 2013 - Charleston Farmer’s Market

    Marion Square
    Charleston, SC

    Free Show