Riverfest continues in downtown Little Rock along the Arkansas River. Get the full lineup of artists and times here.
Another White Water Tavern favorite who lives out of state returns with a visits from Kevin Gordon for a full band show and a night of his self-described “indie swamp” music. The music starts at 10 p.m. The Nashville, Tenn., singer/songwriter is currently touring and raising money so he can release his latest work, the 11-track Gloryland. A superior songwriter, Gordon writes about watching the sun going down and fast trains taking away the blame, and his rustic tunes mixing blues and rock ‘n’ roll have been covered by Keith Richards, Levon Helm and Webb Wilder.
The perfect warbeast would probably be a rabid grizzly bear, but it’s also the name of a Dallas thrash metal act Warbeast, who is visiting Downtown Music. The five piece act with twin, dueling guitars was formally known as Texas Metal Alliance but changed their name to Warbeast, and it was a change for the better. As the band says, “Metal means high speed riffing, thunderous double bass, roaring vocals and plenty of blazing guitar solos.” Sounds like a head-banging good time. Joining Warbeast will be two local acts who also like to do a little heavy metal head-banging: Russellville heavy metal act JudgeMENTAL and Little Rock Southern-flavored metal band Sychosys. The doors open at 7:30 p.m. with the music at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $7 in advance and $10 at the door.
Mojo Depot, the Little Rock group consisting of Tyndall Jackson on guitar, Rob Moore on vocals and guitar, Jason Adams on drums and John Wright on bass, comes to The Afterthought. The music starts at 9 p.m. with a $7 cover. The band has been making music for more than 25 years, creating original jammy blues rock and covering selections from The Rolling Stones, Grateful Dead, The Allman Brothers, Robert Earl Keen and others.
Here’s Kevin Gordon with his “Watching the Sun Go Down”
Riverfest kicks off in downtown Little Rock along the Arkansas River. Get the full lineup of artists and times here.
He was born in Mississippi, lived in Fayetteville and calls Memphis home, but Cory Branan is a favorite at White Water Tavern where he returns again for a performance. The music starts at 10 p.m. The music is a combination of alt country, rock and folk, including the rugged folk of “Tall Green Grass,” the gliding rock of the “Prettiest Waitress in Memphis” and the intimate folk of “Last Man on Earth.” He’s a masterful storyteller, delivering poetic tales with either his mesmerizing, finger-picked acoustic music or his swaggering rock.
Following all the festivities at Riverfest, head back up the hill to Hillcrest and The Afterthought for a night of good fun from the Mockingbird Band. It’s a local outfit of diverse talents who create hillbilly psychedelia, a dose of music influenced by Ozark folk music, aliens, fire, cookies, arrowheads and a number of other things. The music starts at 9 p.m. with a $7 cover.
100.3 The Edge presents a night of furious metal at Juanita’s with headliners All That Remains. The Massachusetts metalcore band first formed in 1998 and has released five albums since then, including 2010′s For We Are Many, an album that is the sound of guitar, bass and drums punching you in the skull but in the best way possible. The doors open at 7:30 p.m. with the music at 8:30 p.m., and tickets are $17 in advance and $22 at the door. Local support will be provided by Russellville heavy metal act JudgeMENTAL (influenced by Pantera, Megadeth and Metallica) and Sychosys, a Southern-flavored metal band influenced by bands such as Pantera, Black Label Society and Black Sabbath.
Fans of Americana music: Just go see Tony Furtado at Stickyz. That might be the best advice you get all week. The banjo and slide guitar player has played with some of his favorite artists such as Bela Fleck, Laurie Lewis and Earl Scruggs, but he is better known for creating his own brand of rapid-fire picking, progressive music that incorporates bluegrass, blues, swing, Celtic, jazz, folk, rock and country. He’s also a two-timer winner of a national banjo championship. The opening act is to be announced, but expect the music at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10 for the 21-and-up show.
The last couple of years have been very kind to the First Lady of Rockabilly: Wanda Jackson. First, she was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2009 as an early influence and then her home of Oklahoma City named a street after her. Why all the hub-bub? Jackson is a rock ‘n’ roll legend, the queen of rock who scored a Top 40 hit with “Let’s Have a Party” in 1960 and later had a string of country hits. But during the last few years her career and her influence have undergone a revival, playing U.S. and European festivals and recording a new album with Jack White, an album including a rollicking cover of Bob Dylan’s “Thunder on the Mountain.” A resurgent Jackson comes to Rev Room. It’s an all-ages show starting at 8 p.m. with Holly Golightly & The Brokeoffs and their collection of blues, rock ‘n’ roll and folk that is in the vein of primitive electric blues. (Golightly is a collaborator with Rocket From The Crypt and The White Stripes, too.) Tickets are $15 in advance or $20 day of.
So remember that late ’90s alternative rock band The Verve Pipe that scored hits with tunes such as “Photograph” and “The Freshmen” (a Top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 chart and No. 1 on the alternative radio chart)? Well, now the outfit led by remaining original members Brian Vander Ark and Donny Brown is in the business of recording children’s songs, releasing a new album titled A Family Album. You know what? It’s actually pretty great for children- and family-oriented alternative rock. Parents who grew up during the time of The Verve Pipe will find themselves tapping their feet right along with their children to the punchy pop rock. Not that The Verve Pipe has went totally soft though as it still tours, playing clubs such as Juanita’s and delivering adult alternative rock. The doors open at 9 p.m. with the music at 10 p.m., and tickets are $12 in advance and $15 at the door.
What do you get when you cross a band featuring a Chilean guitarist with an English/Croatian singer/bassist that started touring in Santiago, Chile, but now calls Austin, Texas, home? Check out Intimate Stranger at Stickyz for the answer. The band’s second album is Under, and it’s best described as poppy indie rock with an experimental flare. Bonus reason to check out the band? That English/Croatian singer/bassist is Tessie Stranger, and she has been named one of the Leading Ladies of Rock by Rolling Stone. The show starts at 9 p.m. with the opening act to be announced along with the ticket price. It’s a 21-and-up show.
Monkhouse, that band that combines “swamp boogie, train beat and a little Jesus,” comes back to White Water Tavern for their regular monthly visit. The musical social movement takes the stage at 8 p.m., and asks fans to bring monetary donations to benefit Miss Beverly’s House, a place that Monkhouse leader Mark Currey describes as “a really great organization that is operating on a bit of a shoestring” and provides transitional housing for adult women. And the Monkhouse sound? A collection of hallelujah music that combines Americana, roots rock and gospel into one roof-raising blend.
Here’s Wanda Jackson with her “Let’s Have a Party”:
Let’s allow the good folks over at Stickyz to offer an introduction to what they have going on: “Before there were The Raconteurs, there were The Greenhornes.” The garage rock act make their Little Rock debut minus fellow Raconteurs Jack White and Brendan Benson as a trio touring in support of their 2010 release Four Stars, the band’s first release since 2002. Nashville, Tenn., two-piece indie rock act JEFF the Brotherhood is the opening act, kicking off the music at 9:30 p.m. with their collection of psychedelic and garage rock mixed with punk and pop. Cover is $10 for the 21-and-up show.
Vermont-based but pretty-much-living-on-the-road roots rock band Grace Potter and the Nocturnals will appear at Rev Room, headlining the Bonnaroo Buzz Tour. The openers are two up-and-coming acts: Athens, Ga., psychedelic country sextet The Futurebirds, and Texas-based guitar slinger Gary Clark Jr., an electrifying guitarist influenced by the late, great Stevie Ray Vaughan. The bill is completed by rising New York City-based stand-up comic Julian McCullough. It’s an 18-and-up show with tickets $20. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. with the music at 7:30 p.m.
Here’s Grace Potter and the Nocturnals with their “Paris (Ooh La La)”:
Seventeen years after Nirvana dissolved following Kurt Cobain’s suicide, the Chicago-based Nirvana tribute band Nevermind (named after Nirvana’s explosive, pioneering 1991 sophomore album) continues the music of the seminal alternative rock band. Comprised of three brothers — J., Sam and Alex Veldman — Nevermind recreates the Nirvana sound (with 70-plus Nirvana tunes in their catalogue) and stage presence of the Seattle-based band, running through the “hits” — “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” “Heart-Shaped Box” — while hitting the deep-album cuts — “On a Plain,” “School” — that slapped early ’90s music in the face. The trio visits Stickyz. The opening act is to be announced but the music will start at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance for the 21-and-up show.
The Afterthought presents a singer/songwriter night with two of the best: Jim Mize and Chris Michaels. Mize takes time out from his day job as a insurance adjuster to play his self-described “rural grinder sausage” music: a mingling of rock ‘n’ roll, country honky tonk and dirty Delta blues with Mize’s gravelly but honest voice. Michaels plays in a number of Little Rock bands, including his Chris Michaels and the Cranks. His solo debut on Max Recordings was Morning & Night, described by Max as an album filled with “cool, gritty rock and roll with touches of blue-eyed soul.” The music starts at 9 p.m. with a $7 cover.
The Arkansas River Blues Society Jam will be held at Cornerstone Pub, and the host band is Unseen Eye. For a $5 cover, patrons will receive a dose of real blues music and the 2011 Blues Festival Guide. The music starts at 9 p.m. Unseen Eye features James “Chicken” Dorris, who has performed with legends such as Bo Diddley and Pinetop Perkins. In 2010, the band played the King Biscuit Blues Festival, Juke Joint Festival and the Sunflower River Festival. Unseen Eye is a self-described “bluesman’s blues band.”
Here’s Nevermind with their version of Nirvana’s “Lithium”:
Game over. Winners will be contacted via e-mail. Thanks for playing.
Grace Potter and the Nocturnals will appear at Rev Room on Sunday, headlining the Bonnaroo Buzz Tour that includes openers stand-up comedian Julian McCullough, and bands Futurebirds and Gary Clark Jr.
The Futurebirds are the next generation of Athens, Ga., rock, a sextet that plays psychedelic country, incorporating hazy feedback and waltzing pedal steel. Gary Clark Jr. is a Texas-based guitar hero (the real-life variety) whose blazing ax work has drawn comparisons to Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan. It’s an 18-and-up show with tickets $20. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. with the music at 7:30 p.m.
StubHub, the world’s largest ticket marketplace, is sponsoring the Bonnaroo Buzz Tour featuring Grace Potter and the Nocturnals. Kicking off May 17, the Buzz Tour takes some of the most talked about bands on the road for 13 shows leading up to the Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival.
Here’s Grace Potter and the Nocturnals with their “Paris (Ooh La La)”:
Billed as Texas country at its finest, the Casey Donahew Band returns to Little Rock with a show at Rev Room. The opening act is to be announced, but expect the music at 9 p.m. Tickets are $12 in advance and $15 day of for the 18-and-up show. The band’s single “Let Me Love You” from their album Moving On hit No. 1 on the Texas Roots Radio chart, and Moving On hit No. 28 on the Billboard top country albums chart. But it’s on the road where the band lives, documenting their travels with tunes such as “Ramblin’ Kind,” a romping rhythm fueled by blues guitar and fiddle that is music best described as Southern-rock flavored country.
Over the course of four albums, Jeff Bates hasn’t become a household name in country music circles, but the artist has written and recorded some of the genre’s best music in that time, including 2002′s Top 10 country hit “The Love Song.” Bates’ newest album is One Day Closer, and the Mississippi musician is on the road promoting it, including a stop at Juanita’s. The doors open at 7 p.m. with the music at 8:05 p.m. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. The opening acts are Arkansas country music acts Luke Williams, a teenager who leads his band through searing Arkansas-bred country rock powered by Williams’ lead guitar; Arkansas country musician Ryan Couron, a country storyteller who mixes his good ol’ boy attitude with a little shot of country rock; and Searcy country musician Victoria Taylor.
Travis McElroy is celebrating five years of releasing some of the best in independent Arkansas music with the Thick Syrup Records Anniversary Show at White Water Tavern. Musical guests for the party will be Little Rock rock ‘n’ roll outfit Sweet Eagle, which includes members of Smoke Up Johnny, Brother Andy & His Big Damn Mouth and American Princes; Little Rock musician Bryan Frazier with a full band in tow; and San Antokyo, self-described as “the sound you hear right before the hammer falls” but also sounding like buzzing, punk-infused rock. The party starts at 10 p.m.
Downtown Music kicks off a reoccurring music event that brings fresh talent to town called the Balance Music new artist series with KillPop Records and Oklahoma City electronic music pair Kids at the Bar. The producer/DJ duo of Chad “Rad” Raunborg and Matt Buckley parlayed fame acquired through a series of remixes, including work with Ellie Goulding, Harlem Shakes and Morning Benders, into their debut EP Exile. Tickets are $8 in advance and $10 before 10 p.m. and $12 after 10 p.m. The opening acts are all local: Justin Sane and Tristan Wingfield’s electronic music combo Sex With Robots, and local DJs Platinumb and Phillip Dixion.
Dreamland Ballroom is promising a night that includes Southern fare and libations; a silent and live auction; and jazz music as it host Jazz For Peace, a nonprofit jazz band with the motto “Unite people through the art form of jazz” and fronted by jazz pianist and vocalist Rick DellaRatta. The event kicks off at 7 p.m., and tickets are $25 and $35. The Central High Jazz Band will open the show.
Here’s Casey Donahew Band with their “Nowhere Fast”:
Giving you the music a day early: Austin, Texas, indie rock band The Rocketboys are coming to Stickyz. The band’s latest is the self-released Build Anyway. So what does the band sound like? Well, the Austin American-Statesman describes the band’s music as “clear, ringing guitars and full-bodied keyboard arrangements, hard-driving [...]
Giving you the music a day early: The pop-flavored R&B group that brought the world “Cool It Now” is on the road for their 30th anniversary tour as New Edition visits Verizon Arena. Tickets are $58.15, $68.40 and $79.40 with fellow R&B act After 7 and R&B artist El Debarge [...]
Giving you the music a day early: Kris Allen at Magic Springs Water and Theme Park‘s Timberwood Amphitheater. This Arkansas resident won the eighth season of American Idol and will be promoting his new album Thank You Camellia. The concert gates open at 6 p.m. with an 8 p.m. showtime. [...]
Giving you the music a day early: Acadiana is a hotbed of Cajun music so let’s talk about Ryan Brunet of Cajun music creators Ryan Brunet and The Malfecteurs, who will be playing White Water Tavern with the music starting at 9:30 p.m. with a $7 cover. At the age [...]
Giving you the music a day early: Wussy is coming to Stickyz. So what does that mean? Well, Wussy is a Cincinnati rock band. Sometimes with pedal steel. Sometimes with a clavinet. Sometimes with harpsichord. It’s really hard categorizing them so let’s don’t. Just enjoy Wussy for what they are [...]
Giving you the music a day early: People who write off Nada Surf as a MTV-promoted one-hit wonder because of 1996′s “Popular” haven’t been paying attention for the past 16 years. The New York City trio’s buzzing guitar attack, pop choruses and harmonies have been featured on six subsequent albums, [...]
Giving you the music a day early: Scott H. Biram and Lydia Loveless at Stickyz — this is going to be quite a show. Why? Biram is a 21st-century blues sorcerer, throwing blues, psychobilly, country and punk in a jar with a few gulps of whiskey, violently shaking it and [...]
Giving you the music a day early: Jeez, it was about time. It has been since December that the self-proclaimed King of the Country Western Troubadours played Little Rock. Fortunately, Unknown Hinson returns with a show at Juanita’s. The doors open at 7:30 p.m. with the music starting at 8:30 [...]
Giving you the music a day early: Here’s a little-known fact: Outside of the city of Tahlequah, Okla., is a public use area titled No Head Hollow Public Use Area. No lie. The city is also the capital of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Nation. Now, why are we [...]
Giving you the music a day early: It’s going to get heavy at Downtown Music. How heavy? Well, how heavy does a show that includes At Wars End, Reticient and The Revolutioners sound? Oh yeah, not that heavy if you don’t know what the bands sound like. Well, here’s a [...]