Every spring NWA is blessed with bands that might be “the next big thing.” The annual pilgrimage to Austin for the biggest band showcase in the world, SXSW, brings a number of emerging acts through town. This week, Smoke & Barrel will host some of them.
Tonight, Smoke & Barrel has North Carolina’s Fox Hunt bluegrass. Saturday night the club will host pop rockers (think Memphis Pencils and kazoos) Amo Joy! from Indianapolis and Eugene, Oregon’s clever Slow Trucks. These two out-of-towners will be joined by local faves, Guta.
Fresh from SXSW at GoodFolk on Sunday night will be western swing group the Hot Club of Cowtown. Singer-songwriter Johnsmith will play GoodFolk on Wednesday night.
Other highlights are the Paper Tongues at George’s on Friday night. This North Carolina outfit is taking the rocket to the top with their rock hip-hop fusion. It’s a big arena-style sound.
Of course, if you’ve got the bucks, you’d be crazy to miss the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis tonight at the Walton Arts Center.
Now it’s time to get out your calendar, because next Thursday night is a big night. Here’s was brewing:
“Some Jazz Awhile” a reading by Miller Williams, who will be joined by the Walter Savage Trio, will be at 7 p.m. at the Starr Theater at the WAC.
Direct from Scotland will be folksingers Sara Grey (banjo) and Kieron Means (guitar). The free show is at 7:30 p.m. in the auditorium of the home economics building on the UA campus.
Country singer Kevin Fowler will be at George’s, and will be spilling tunes like “Beer, Bait and Ammo” and “The Lord Loves a Drinking Man.” Fowler has a killer band and puts on a big show with smoke, lights and all that stuff.
At Teatro Scarpino, three of NWA’s finest — Jovan Arellano, Jeff Kearney and Zac Scott — will be doing a Johnny Cash tribute.
And at the UARK Ballroom, Effron White will be hosting Songs in the Ville, showcasing award-winning NWA songwriter Darren Ray, Don White of Tulsa and Greg Jacobs of Chekota, Okla.
‘Quitting’ And ‘Stop & Go’
Kissing hats and elephants driving rarely happen in real life, but somewhere in someone’s mind it all jells. These images and others that are equally as interesting have been hatched as stop-motion films. It will all become ordinary at the video group show, “Stop & Go” at 7 p.m. Monday at the University of Arkansas Fine Arts Center Gallery.
The videos are by national and international artists.
Videos include “The Manipulators” by Clare Rojas and Andrew Jeffrey Wright, who alter and collage images from fashion magazines to create an entirely different story. Intricate paper-cutout circles by sculptor Jen Stark that become regurgitating rainbows and organic structures in “Papermation.” Quilt-maker Sherri Wood and animator Ignacio Alcantara collaborate on “Sewing for Jesus” as they animate the making of a quilt that honors those who died in the Iraq War. Students from the Croatian animators workshop SAF Cakovec Studio create a darkly funny animation of two characters and their mishaps in “We’ve All Fallen From Mars.” Comic illustrator Lilli Carre creates a high-wire act of sleepy time bears, black crows and senior folk in “For the Birds.”
The show is curated by Bay Area artist and animator Sarah Klein. There will be a reception for Klein following the screening. The shorts will also be showing from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through March 18.
A feature-length indie film “Quitting” will have its premiere at 7 p.m. March 18 at the Union Theater at the UA.
Starring James Phillips, Alex Center, Chuck Mere and Emilio Tirado, the comedy follows the members of a garage band who decide to quit smoking cigarettes a week before their first gig. Some of the film was shot on the UA campus.
Operating on a budget of $18,000, Mere of Fayetteville also directed the film and has spent the last four years on the production. Northwest Arkansas’ James R. Phillips wrote the screenplay.
The premiere is free.