Third Annual Myrtle Beach Jazz Festival Performers: James ‘Bull’ Canty and Kobie Keys

James “Bull” Canty and Kobie Keys have been added to the still-growing schedule at the third annual Myrtle Beach Jazz Festival. Their performances will be part of three days of live jazz, soul and R&B music to be presented between Sept. 28-30, 2018 on the Grand Strand.

Canty comes from a long line of family musicians, and has been playing music since he was only three years old. He later studied music at Brevard College and Utah State University, mastering nearly 30 instruments along the way. He’s always focused on the trumpet, however, and that led to an early stint as a soloist in the Holland America Line cruise ship’s 10-piece international band.

“Of all the instruments I play, the trumpet is the one I speak clearest through,” Canty told the Myrtle Beach Sun-News. “Music is a universal language. I don’t need language to communicate.”

Canty has also performed at the MOJA Arts Festival in Charleston, S.C., at the Francis Marion University Performing Arts Center, at countless area churches, and with the Florence Symphony Orchestra (where he has served as principal trumpet), Carolina Master Chorale and Long Bay Symphony – despite enduring difficult health issues.

His most recent album was titled Christmas Brass. Canty earlier released The Gospel According to Brass, and served as lead trumpeter on the Utah State University Jazz Orchestra’s Europa project. A featured performer at the second annual Myrtle Beach Jazz Festival in 2017, Canty has also worked with the Shoreline Brass Band.

His faith remains a guiding force. “I close my eyes before I even put the horn to my face,” Canty told the Sun-News. “Then when I start playing, whatever happens just happens. I only breathe life into the horn. The rest comes from upstairs. I let God take over.”

Kobie “Keys” Turner arrives after featured performances at Roc’s Jazz Bar and Sydney’s in Charlotte, N.C. He also appeared on Calvin Richardson’s 2008 album When Love Comes, contributing horn and keyboards.

As always, the Myrtle Beach Jazz Festival is free. Bring your lawn chairs for this special event, to be held on historic Carver Street in Myrtle Beach. In addition to all of the great music, there will be food and merchandise vendors, children’s activities, and a wine and beer garden.

Lineup announcements are continuing, so check back often. You can also follow the Myrtle Beach Jazz Festival on Facebook for the latest information.

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