If you go
What: Live on the Levee
When: 6:30 p.m. Friday
Where: Haddad Riverfront Park
FYI: Friday's opener is Comparsa, followed by Acoustic Syndicate
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Members of the North Carolina-based Acoustic Syndicate were at the top of their game and ready to break through when they made a decision a few years ago to step back instead of leaning forward.
And there's not a speck of regret, says guitarist Steve McMurry.
The band, which plays a mix of bluegrass, folk and rock, formed in 1992 and from 1998 to 2005 toured heavily. It was on the brink of breaking through to bigger things when the band members - including McMurry and his cousins, Bryon and Fitz McMurry, decided to scale back.
"We had a good reason to get off the road," McMurry said. Members had families and babies and ties to home that needed to be tended.
As it turned out, the economy tanked right after that and working as a musician would have brought tough times.
"I'm glad things turned out the way they did," McMurry said.
After some time kicking back, the band is stepping things up a bit and touring to promote its first new album in eight years, "Rooftop Garden," including a stop in Charleston on Friday to headline the closing concert of the Live on the Levee series.
McMurry said touring this time is around is "absolutely" more enjoyable, as the band takes a more laid-back approach.
The time off gave him and cousin Bryon the luxury of time in crafting songs for the new album and the good fortune to find two new musicians to join the band.