March 13, 2014

Local bands, diversity of sound on stages at St. Pat's Five Points

Part of the draw of St. Patâ™s in Five Points is the chance to hear local bands, many of whom got their start here in Columbia.

Part of the draw of St. Pat’s in Five Points is the chance to hear local bands, many of whom got their start here in Columbia.

The lineup at this year’s event ranges from hip hop to alternative rock to country and more. Here, a sampling of some of the groups.

Atlas Road Crew

Atlas Road Crew met at the University of South Carolina when they started selling out the Five Points Pub regularly, said drummer Patrick Drohan.

This year Atlas Road Crew will be headlining in their own backyard – they play the WXRY stage at 4:45 p.m.

The band describes itself as having a vintage sound with modern influences, perfect for the diverse crowd of St. Patrick’s Day, what Drohan calls an eclectic event.

“I think our style of music really can be enjoyed by anybody who’s attending,” he said.

St. Patrick’s Day has always been special for Drohan because of his name.

Drohan said when he was growing up, people would always say, “It’s your day, man.”

It almost felt like it was his birthday, he said.

Ben G

Hip hop artist Ben G is from Columbia and will return for the festival of green with two different shows.

Ben G described himself as someone who appreciates and loves Columbia – especially for the annual Irish celebration.

“St. Pat’s is always like a homecoming,” he said.

This is the first time he will be a part of the festival, before only performing on private stages.

He will be on the Free Times / 92.1 The Palm Stageat 12:45 p.m. and the WXRY stage at 3:30 p.m.

His style of music appeals to a generation of people, since hip hop has been around for more than 20 years, he said.

Hip hop is its own branch of pop music, he added.

“Hip hop is some of the most popular music out there." Watch his video, "Dump My Ashes.”

Manchester Orchestra

Manchester Orchestra played the St. Patrick’s Day festival a few years ago, but the main thing Andy Hull remembers from the event was the rain.

This year, the high is supposed to hover just below 70 degrees, with only a slight chance of rain.

“We’ve been going to Columbia since the very beginning stages of our band,” Hull said.

The band has played venues like New Brookland Tavern and Jillian’s, even old churches, Hull said.

Manchester Orchestra will play the Bud Light / Rock 93.5 stage at 5:40 p.m., premiering in the extra hour the festival will be open this year.


Parmalee is a country rock band that will bring country influences to the mix of music to the St. Patrick’s Day festival stages. The band is ready for the day’s fun.

“I think if people are there to party, they’re going to have a good time watching us,” said band member Barry Knox.

Knox said there isn’t any Irish blood in the band, which got its start in Greenville, N.C.

But the crowd is known as being big drinkers, so they will fit right in the Irish-themed party.

“I think we’ve got that much in common,” Knox said.

And even though the band is from the other Carolina, they have played S.C.’s Greenville stages as well, and will be comfortable in Columbia.

“We consider ourselves the Carolina boys,” Knox said. “Both Carolinas are home to us.”

Weaving The Fate

Weaving The Fate, an alternative rock band, is known around Columbia, where the band got its start as Villanova.

Frontman BC Villanova said playing at St. Pat’s in Five Points has become an annual event for the band, and playing in front of the hometown crowd is a rewarding experience.

“We have the best fans in the world back home,” he said.

The band will be playing on the Bud Light / Rock 93.5 Stage at 4:10 p.m.

The crowd at the festival fits in well with the mixed-genre band, he said.

Rock fans, funk fans and the variety of ages of festival-goers can enjoy the band’s music, from people in their 60s and 70s to college kids and “young kids that never get to see us play because (we) always play smoky bars that only their parents can go to,” BC Villanova said.

He most likely won’t be wearing green because he described himself as the “black shirt guy, always.”

But he said he is painfully Irish in that he is “pasty white.”

“Even if I don’t wear green, you can probably see my Irishness just on my vampire skin.”


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