Photos and Writing by Audrey Wilson
On March 17th, The Melon Barn in Greer, SC hosted a lineup that was originally supposed to play at The Spokeasy in Charlotte NC; however, heavy rain prevented the show from going on at its original location. Fortunately, the owners of the Melon Barn venue in Greer made the show go on with an impressive crowd for such a rainy night. Playing the show was hardcore punk band Lacking (Richmond, VA), hardcore punk band Psyop (Washington DC), noisy grindcore band R.O.T.W.L.C.F.T.S.C.B.M.H. (Richmond, VA), and Sludge Punk band Wastoid (Charlotte, NC). Every band that played brought their own style of heaviness and were unique in their own ways.
The venue owners worked hard to ensure the night was still perfect for both touring bands and fans alike as they set up tents to stay dry, opened up their home (same location as the venue), and even made it a free show due to the uncertainty of the weather. If you have never been to the Melon Barn, it is one of the most welcoming venues I have had the pleasure of attending a show at. I got to chat with venue promoter Bryan, otherwise known as SMSX Entertainment about what the Melon Barn is and why it is so special.
A: Explain to me how the Melon Barn started and what the vision is behind it?
B: We started throwing shows every couple of months in 2018 so that Curly Blue (the house band at the time) could get in front of some faces and get their name out there. After doing that just a couple of times, we realized the energy that people in the area were bringing to these events was unreal. We had a few out of town bands start coming out and we loved having bands from other cities come. We really became interested in trying to merge scenes with some cities that really dug what we were doing. Five years later and we have had multiple bands from cities all up the east coast come out to play at our shitty barn. As long as the barn is still standing, we will be doing the damn thing. We have a lot of different ideas for the Melon Barn that we plan on making happen in the very near future.
A: What is a Melon Barn show like for those that have not been to one?
B: If you have never been to a Melon Barn show, it is like riding a majestic unicorn through the pits of hell and coming out the other side a pile of beans.
A: What are your favorite Melon Barn shows that have been played in the past?
B: A couple of my favorite Melon Barn shows have been the Save Swad show and probably the first Melon Fest a couple years ago because it was a big part of out motivation to do more cool shit like that. I just want to say that this has been a huge group effort from the very first show. There’s a lot of moving pieces in this. It is not easy and it is not always kind but we fucking love it and could not do it without every single one of us.