For February 1 to February 8
When we get a bit of cutting edge New York delivered to our doorstep here in NWA, it’s a good day. When we get two days, it’s a reason to celebrate. So let the party begin.
DBR (Daniel Bernard Roumain) will bring two different performances to the Walton Arts Center this week for what promises to be some of the most impressive shows of the year.
On Saturday, The DBR String Quartet (minus DBR) will play the 200-seat Starr Theater for an up-close-and personal experience with some of New York’s hottest young performers. The music is part classical and part dance hall. The group will be playing some of DBR’s original works along with some Phillip Glass (who has collaborated with DBR) compositions, spanning the range from pumped up chamber works to rock and electronica.
The DBR SQ includes Earl Maneein, violin; Jessie Reagen, cello; Matthew Szemela, violin; and Jon Weber, viola. The musical pedigrees of the group have a large “wow” factor. The various members have performed with the likes of Phillip Glass, Kanye West, Beyonce, Jay-Z, Van Morrison, Cassandra Wilson, Chaka Kahn and Sinead O’Conner, in addition to classical credits with orchestras and chamber groups worldwide.
On Tuesday night, DBR, aka the hip hop violinist, will bring “A Civil Right Reader” to the main stage at the WAC. The program includes four pieces composed by DBR that pay tribute to Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcom X, Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. and Maya Angelou. String Quartet No. 3 Powell (2003) was commissioned and premiered by the Orchestra of St. Lukes’ at the Dia Center in New York City. The 2005 Other Minds Festival in San Francisco commissioned and premiered DBR’s Sting Quartet No. 4 Angelou (2004).
For this performance DBR will be joined by a nine-piece group that includes The Mission SQ Unit and DJ Scientific for a show that melds classical, hip hop and funk. The group includes the string quartet, drums, keyboards and vocalist.
DJ Scientific began his musical career in Oakland, Calif. in 1995 with the hip hop group Rizing Sun Productions. After moving to New York, he began spinning for a variety of venues and clients including Sean P. Diddy Combs and Demi Moore. He recently designed a sound installation for the Studio Museum of Harlem.
DBR and DJ Scientific continue to push the envelope on the musical landscape. Last month they premiered “Sonata for Violin and Turntable” at Canada’s Push Festival.
DBR & The Mission: SQ Unit and DJ Scientific will follow their WAC performance of “A Civil Right Reader” with a repeat performance the following night at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.
Don’t wait to hear “what you missed” by not getting out for these shows.
Tickets for The DBR String Quartet on Saturday night are $16-$25. Tickets for the DBR & The Mission: SQ Unit and DJ Scientific “A Civil Rights Reader” on Tuesday night are $8-$16. Note to jam band fans: These shows are for you.
An Evening with Martin and Langston
Memories are made of this. On Saturday night Danny Glover and Felix Justice will take the main stage at the Walton Arts Center for a journey that celebrates the spoken and written legacies of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Langston Hughes.
Glover has a long list of film credits including starring in the “Lethal Weapon” series and most recently, Dreamgirls.
The evening will begin with Justice’s critically acclaimed portrayal of Martin Luther King Jr. Justice virtually transforms into the legendary civil rights leader, momentarily recreating the power of the man and his message. Glover will present theatrical readings from the works of Langston Hughes. Following the performance, Justice and Glover will share the stage for a question and answer session.
Trout, Robben, Saliva and more
You might as well take a sleeping bag to George’s this week, because the lineup is big! And, there are notable acts at other venues around town, too. Here are the highlights: Tonight at George’s Big Smith’s Mark Bilyeu will open for Cary Hudson. Other acoustic options for tonight are Michael Smith at Goodfolk and the slightly amped up The 3 Two’s at the Green Door. Friday night bluesman Scott Ellison will be at the Green Door and The American Years at Tony C’s off Dickson. At George’s on Friday night there will be a killer triple bill of Trout Fishing in America, local bluegrass unit Charliehorse and Texas country rocker Bleu Edmondson. Saturday night catch singer songwriter Zach Bramhall at the Green Door and another big triple bill at George’s with Oreo Blue, Nace Brothers, Earl Cate and Steve Pryor.
One of the shows of 2007 will be Tuesday night at George’s when guitarist Robben Ford comes to town. One of Ford’s first gigs was playing with bluesman Jimmy Witherspoon. Ford was next nabbed by saxophonist Tom Scott for the jazz group LA Express and later toured with Joni Mitchell and played on her “Hissing of Summer Lawns” and “Miles of Isles” albums. And if those collaborations aren’t enough to impress you, know that he also worked with Miles Davis and George Harrison. For a change of pace Saliva and Crossfade will hit George’s on Wednesday night. It’s metal that doesn’t forget that melody is a good thing. Just joining Saliva and Crossfade on a multi-city tour are Cleveland rockers Ligion. Remember Saliva frontman Josey Scott in the film “Hustle and Flow?”
Groundhog Gig: Will The Jori Costello Band see its shadow?
Local “home grown” trio, the Jori Costello Band, is back in town after performances at the Kerrville Folk Festival and NYC’s, Bitter End. The trio will play the Skittle Music series at the U-Ark Ballroom, 644 W. Dickson St. on Groundhog Day this Friday night.
Band members have been trading off instruments with renewed fury, said Costello, who holds a NAMA for “Best Solo Female Singer Songwriter” and an OMA for “Folk Artist of The Year.” According to Costello their alternative folk style has begun to lean more toward a “rockin’ indie folk with a funky jazz flair.”Joining Costello in the band are percussionist and NAMA winner Kristar Miller and bassist Angela Oxygen Edge.
Costello’s first CD, “Home Grown,” has been reissued and will be available at the show along with the band’s new live fund raising CD and the single, “I Will Love” (free digital download a www.myspace.com/joricostello). Check out the band’s first music videos at www.youtube.com by searching joricostello band. Information on future gigs, blogs, and photos can be found at www.joricostello.com.
Perhaps more important than whether or not the band will see their shadow on Groundhog Day is whether or not the Ozarks will see the shadow of these musicians heading out for more national audiences.
Doors open 7:30 p.m. Eddie Glenn will open the show at 8 p.m.