It is sometimes a little too easy to forget, given the rise of commerce and retail in Northwest Arkansas over the past several years, that at the heart of this area there has been and continues to be a thriving little college town, full of what thriving little college towns are known for: subculture, nightlife and art.
Aerosault.com is a nice reminder of this fact. As they explain on their website, Aerosault.com is a “collective of artists, musicians, DJs and producers….based in Northwest Arkansas. Specializing in underground music and urban art our goal is to provide an outlet for individuals to showcase their works and have an opportunity to network with other creative minds through our website and events.”
Aerosault has already been working on building a scene for electronica and dance music in the NWA, spending the last several months hosting parties and shows featuring local, regional and national acts. But this weekend, Aerosault.com is welcoming a bit of a subculture superstar to Dickson Street.
Nicaraguan-born and Miami based DJ Craze is to turntable-ism what Brad Pitt is to Hollywood. He has won contests, championships and respect over the last decade to become known as one of the top DJ’s in the world – and he isn’t even 25-years old yet. He’s worked with Herbaliser, Funkstorung, Propellarheads and Cee-Lo of Gnarls Barkley. Put his name into YouTube, and tons of videos will quickly pop up that feature DJ Craze honing his craft at the age when most kids are learning to drive.
Thanks to Aerosault.com, Northwest Arkansas now has a chance to see this phenomenon up close and personal. DJ Craze and a bill full of other bright national DJ talent will spin their wares Friday night at UARK Ballroom on Dickson Street. Advance tickets are $10 and available at Aerosault.com. Day of show tickets are $15. Brian Matthews
Occasionally, a voice pops up that makes you say ‘whoa.’ Chris Denny makes us say ‘whoa.’ He sounds like he could have just stepped off the stage at the Moulin Rouge, but the deal is he’s just 23, he’s from Arkansas and his music is more indie rock singer songwriter flavored. His songs are like dispatches from the dark side. He brings listeners to a place where danger and melancholy run deep. It’s Kurt Weill meets Townes Van Zant. Denny has known some serious heartbreak and taken a few wrong turns, battling addiction and doing some time.
The Little Rock songwriter released his first CD, Age Old Hunger, last week and will do two dates this weekend in Fayetteville.
Denny and his band, the Old Soles, began work on the album in February. However, a week into recording, Denny decided to produce the CD himself, so left the studio and hooked up with Jason Weinheimer who engineered the album in his Little Rock studio tracking everything in three days. The 11 song CD features nine Denny originals with noteworthy covers of Johnny Cash and Kris Kristofferson songs.
So far, Denny’s played very little outside Arkansas, but, with the release of Age Old Hungers he’s been hitting the road to perform for people who he hasn’t spent years drinking and living and, occasionally, fighting. He spent the first part of this month playing clubs in the Big Apple.
Christopher Denny will play The Gypsy on Saturday night and on Sunday will join poet Miller Williams for a 3 p.m. fundraiser at George’s.
Generally not a whole lot happens during the dog days of summer, but that’s not the case this week. Check out the Twilight Art Walk in Rogers on Friday night. It’s organized by Poor Richards Art Gallery and there’s a lot more going on than just art. Trout Fishing in America will be playing Saturday at the Mount Sequoyah Conference Center in Fayetteville. On Sunday the Washington County Historical Society will host their popular Ice Cream Social—the 37th annual— from 4 to 8 p.m. on the grounds of Headquarters House at 118 E. Dickson St. Homemade cakes, ice cream, historic costumes, barber shop music, a treasure sale and silent auction. This is a fundraiser for the historical society. Tickets are $5 adults, $2.50 six to 12 or $15 family