Jonathan Tyler and The Northern Lights
It’s hard to stand out in the world of rock ‘n roll, but sometimes it happens. Jonathan Tyler and the Northern Lights are standouts. Although they’re a Texas band, they’re not one of the country-fried Texas bands that regularly plow through NWA. The music’s something you’d expect from heavy-handed singer-songwriters. It’s full of rock, some occasional funk and some nice swingin’-and-swayin’ ballads. And, Tyler has a voice supreme. The band enhanced their sound with a big full blown production that included horns and chorus on their debut album “Hot Trottin’” The album was produced by Chris Bell who has worked with the likes Erykah Badu and The Eagles. In fact, Eagles fans will like this band. This is a new band, hot out of the gate. It’s a band to watch. Catch them Friday night at George’s on Dickson Street.
Prog jam rockers, moe. will play George’s on Saturday night. The show has been moved from the Arkansas Music Pavilion. Also on the bill are string masters, the Del McCoury Band. moe. has played Radio City Music Hall on New Year’s Eve for the past two years and at festivals like Lollapalooza and Vegoose. They’re a band with personality and their music is clever and melodic.
Jazz at its best
Friday night the KUAF Summer Jazz Concert Series will showcase NWA’s best jazz composers and arrangers at the Composer’s Showcase at 8 p.m. at the University of Arkansas Fine Arts Concert Hall.
The show will open with two originals from upright bassist and veteran Bay Area musician, Walter Savage, who now calls NWA home. Savage will be joined by Al Gibson on trumpet, Ben Harris on guitar, and Darren Novotny on drums.
The remainder of the first set will feature the Fayetteville Little Big Band, a nonet performing an all original program with lush arrangements for five horns plus rhythm section The rhythm section will be: Claudia Burson, piano; Ben Harris, guitar; Jim Greeson, bass; and Darren Novotny, drums and percussion. The five-piece horn section will feature Gerry Sloan, trombone; Rick Salonen, baritone sax; C.J. Weatherford, tenor sax; Nathan McLeod, alto sax; and Al Gibson, trumpet. Original compositions by six of the nine band members make up the eclectic stew.
The second set will open with former Fayetteville native and UA graduate, Adam Collins, who has been pursuing his musical muse in Colorado. He will return to Fayetteville to present a cameo performance on vibes and marimba. The Fayetteville Little Big Band will then take the stage once again to explore the musical possibilities for nine musicians.
This is always one of the favorite concerts of the summer showcase and each year offers music lovers the rare opportunity to hear original jazz compositions, some for the first time.
Advance tickets are $12 general and are available at www.digjazz.com. Tickets at the door are $15 general. Reduced ticket prices for students and NAJS members. For information call 225-2306.
New Play Showcase
A breathe of cool fresh air blows through NWA every summer when the Boars Head Players stage their New Play Showcase. This weekend Clinnesha Dillion’s play “How to Get the Mango (when the lizard’s in the way)” will mount today, Friday Saturday and Sunday at the Walton Art Center’s Baum Studios.
Set in Louisiana, the play is about a woman who has supernatural powers who tries to normalize her life by escaping to the world of academia.
The play is directed by Kate Frank. The cast includes Christy Hall, Justin Cunningham, Aisha Okoroafor, Laura Harrell, Aspen Knight, Francis Humphreys, Liam Selvey and Ali Guthrie.
“The Man Without A Country” by Larry Mitchell, will premiere on July 31 and will run through Aug. 3 at Baum Studios. Directed by Jae-Hyeong Sim, the play is based on a short story by Edward Everett Hale.
Although the story is fiction, some of the characters have familiar names. The play follows Army Lt. Phillip Nolan who gets mixed up with Aaron Burr and ends up on trial for his life. Feeling betrayed, the 19 year-old Nolan makes a mistake that will haunt him for the next 55 years.
The acting company is: Will Grayson, Jacquelyne Jones, Asa Tims, Bristi Higgins, Derek Kolluri, Sarah Schultz, Morgan Ayres, Allison Redding and Caden Worley.
Tickets are $14 general with reduced prices for students and seniors. For reservations call 575-4752.