All is not exactly well in the world of Riverfest, with ticket sales reportedly down and CeeLo likely getting angrier by the second, but it was a perfectly memorable, crowded and strange weekend, and the Times' own Brian Chilson was there on the ground documenting it. Relive the thing from the safety of your own home / phone, far from the heat, the Jägermeister t-shirts and the chicken-on-a-stick.
Following their excellent show, I sat down with Jordan Smith (guitar/vocals), Emmett Miller (guitar/vocals), and Brent Toler (guitar/vocals) as they shed some light on the highs and lows of relentless touring, unlikely influences (Prince is in the mix), and imminent world domination. /more/
Arkansas Times Recommends is a weekly series in which Times staff members (or whoever happens to be around at the time) highlight things we've been enjoying (or, in Max's case, not enjoying) this week. Read on to find out about two-headed blue birds in Arkansas; the glory of CJ's Butcher Boy Burgers and Herman's Ribhouse, an interesting book called "The Interestings" and music to listen to from the likes of Kenny Loggins, Steve Gunn, Jim Mize and 5th Ward Weebie. Plus eleven short films that will make your day. /more/
The Market Street Cinema is moving to a vacant theater in the Riverdale shopping center — good news on several fronts for movie fans. Rock Candy, which had this news yesterday, also has an update on the Riverfest/CeeLo Green fee dispute. /more/
Yesterday, we reported that Riverfest had a contractual dispute with headliner CeeLo Green over the length of his set Saturday night at the First Security Amphitheatre, and would not pay him anything beyond their initial deposit: "Most entertainers require a 10-50% deposit, and CeeLo's was on the higher end of the deposit range," said board spokesperson Cheddy Wigginton. This morning, in a statement to THV, CeeLo's manager denied that the festival had withheld payment, saying that "despite reports, they were given a check after his performance for the full amount discussed." /more/
If silence on social media and news media are any indication, Riverfest ended with only the bang of fireworks last night and nothing more unsettling. Brian Chilson continued his monumental cataloguing of the three-day event on the Arkansas River with the traditional fireworks shot, enhanced this year by the bridge lighting project. Don't know yet how crowds compared, but they appeared healthy. /more/
The Arkansas River's illuminated bridges presented a fine photo opportunity for the Times' Brian Chilson last night as he covered Riverfest. You can see lots more of his photos of the crowd, performers and other sights at his Facebook page. Great stuff. /more/
Here's the latest video from Little Rock's Goon des Garcons and the Young Gods of American camp, a clip for "DIRTY BOYZ 2K14" that opens with a solid minute of druggy ambiance and is enough to make you want to quit your job and go nocturnal.
Two people were killed with two trains collided near Hwy. 67 early this morning, and State Police are evacuating residents of the southern end of the city while the trains burn. U.S. 67 south of Hoxie and U.S. 63 are closed. The trains were carrying hazardous chemicals.
Give Arkansas a Raise Now, the group seeking to qualify a ballot measure to raise the state minimum wage from $6.25 to $8.50 an hour by 2017, turned in an additional 69,070 signatures to the Arkansas Secretary of State's office today.
American Bridge, the liberal PAC formed by David Brock, the former Clinton foe now dedicated to round-the-clock Hillary Clinton defender, is out today with a new report on environmental impacts and layoffs from Koch Industries. The report focuses on the business activities of the Koch brothers — more famous for hundreds of millions in political spending aimed at slashing government services, regulation and taxes — in twelve states, including Arkansas. From the report: "The Kochs' extreme, self-serving agenda is bad for working families. And that reality is starkly embodied not only by their political persuasions, but by their business endeavors."
Ceramicist Barbara Satterfield, one of the Arkansas Times' "Visionaries" in 2013, has announced the creation of a touring, interactive sculpture exhibit that will be installed in public places in Helena, Heber Springs, Dardanelle and Warren before the final exhibition at the Cox Creative Center.
For this week’s cover story, three of us from the Times took a post-2 a.m. tour of Midtown, Electric Cowboy and Elevations to get some pictures and shout questions at strangers over the music. Fortunately, it’s easier to cold-start a conversation with someone when they’ve had 3 or 4 (or 9 or 10) drinks inside them. Unfortunately, although the willingness-to-talk curve goes up relative to the amount of alcohol consumed, the coherence-of-conversation curve moves in the opposite direction. Here are a few outtakes from a mostly sober night of inviting drunks to rant about city politics.