Historical entertainment planned for joint celebration of three Southwest Arkansas milestone anniversaries
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SUPER WATER SYMPATHY
9:30 p.m. Stickyz. $5.
Super Water Sympathy of Shreveport, La., bills its sound as "water pop," i.e., "a synthesis of classic symphonic ambience with modern ethereal anthems." After listening to a few songs from the band's 2011 debut, "Vesper Belle," and their new single, "Uh Oh!," I'm still struggling a bit with that description. I suppose there are some ambient elements around the edges of the songs, and there are certainly references to H2O throughout, but for the most part, the band's sound isn't too far from the terrestrial pop of Coldplay or maybe The Fray. One key difference: Singer Ansley Hughes has a big, bold, sultry voice that gives Super Water Sympathy a big, bold edge over a lot of similar young outfits. The five-piece has had a pretty big 2012, playing the Vans Warped Tour and recording its sophomore album in the U.K. with producer Cam Blackwood, who's worked with Brazilian dance mavens CSS and handled live sound for Florence + The Machine, among other notables. Opening the 18-and-older show are local indie folk-rockers Free Micah and standout indie rock quartet Whale Fire. Super Water Sympathy and Free Micah play again Saturday at Maxine's (see calendar). RB
6 p.m. Mosaic Templars Cultural Center. Free.
The documentary "deepsouth" explores the HIV/AIDS epidemic in — you guessed it — the Deep South, specifically Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana. The film follows four people, including a 24-year-old, HIV-positive gay black man from Mississippi, two organizers of an HIV support network in Louisiana and an Alabama activist who travels the region advocating for more HIV funding for Southern states. The film has done well since its debut this summer, earning critical accolades and awards from the Shout! Gay and Lesbian Film Festival of Alabama and Outflix Film Festival. Director Lisa Biagiotti told the Oxford American that "it's the same virus, but HIV is a different disease in the South, therefore the lessons of the last thirty years and successes in urban areas cannot be replicated in a place where culture and society are so different. It might be better to look at the best practices in the developing world because some of the challenges are the same." The film is presented by the Arkansas Minority Health Commission in recognition of World AIDS Day and as part of a broader mission to de-stigmatize HIV/AIDS and help end the disease. RB
7:30 p.m. The Weekend Theater. $12-$16.
S.E. Hinton was only 17 in 1967 when her first novel, "The Outsiders," was published. The book was widely credited with expanding the scope of young-adult fiction and would go on to sell millions and millions of copies, inspiring the 1983 film of the same title. Hinton has said that she wrote the book out of frustration with much of what was marketed to young readers at the time. Her tale of switchblades and gang fights was informed from her real-life experiences and was probably fairly shocking to the square community at the time. In 2012, the idea of "rumbles" between Greasers and Socs seems pretty quaint, especially compared to the inner-city warfare we've witnessed in the intervening years. But many of the book's themes — class rivalry, dysfunctional families and relying on literature and art to escape the grind of daily life — are evergreen. This stage adaptation, by Christopher Sergel, breaks the book into two acts and hews closely to the original. The Weekend Theater is back up and running again after a car smashed into the front of it earlier in the month. This production runs at 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays through Dec. 15. RB
SE7EN SHARP SHARES
7 p.m. Fox and Hound. $5 adv., $7 door.
A lot of Times readers are probably familiar with Central Arkansas rockers Se7en Sharp. The band played in the 2012 Times Musicians Showcase, rocking the room with a mix of bombastic Southern rock and modern post-grunge sounds. This year, the guys in Se7en Sharp reprise their annual benefit concert, dubbed "Se7en Sharp Shares." All proceeds from the show will benefit St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, the Memphis institution that has developed pioneering techniques for saving children from a host of illnesses, but with a special focus on cancer. Also performing will be Mayday by Midnight, Stella Luss and Jon Keniston. In addition to the live music, there'll be a raffle, door prizes, new band merchandise and more. So if you're looking for a night to rock the eff on out, while also supporting a worthy cause, Se7en Sharp can help you out. While you're at it, check out War Chief's coat drive benefit show as well (see next page). RB
7:30 p.m. Stickyz. $5 or a donation.
This weekend offers a twofer on rock shows that will help make the world a better place. In addition to "Se7en Sharp Shares" (see previous page), you've got War Chief's "War(m) Chief," which will collect coats, jackets and other items of warm clothing for The Van, part of the homeless outreach of The One Inc. They do good work, taking food, clothes, toiletries and other items directly to homeless folks. Steady readers of the Times will likely be acquainted with War Chief, who played in the 2012 Times Musicians Showcase, making it all the way to the finals. The band has undergone some lineup changes this year, adding a fifth player and hitting the road for dates across the mid-South, including some shows down in The Live Music Capital of the World. They also released their debut full-length, the very rewarding, 11-song "Love Letters from Prester John." This show will be a relatively early night, and a great way to wind down from the weekend and help out someone who hasn't been as fortunate. War Chief frontman Grayson Shelton said donations of children's coats are especially welcome, so bring what you can. RB
JON DEE GRAHAM
8 p.m. Stickyz. $10 adv., $15 day of.
A veteran of Austin's underground music scene, Jon Dee Graham cut his teeth with punk legends the Skunks in the 1970s and later teamed up with Alejandro Escovedo to form the seminal Cowpunk band the True Believers. Since then he's been churning out the kind of solo albums that leave music critics cursing the injustice that he ain't given the credit he's due. Well, he is in some quarters: He's the only person ever thrice inducted into the Austin Music Hall of Fame, once with the Skunks, once with the Believers, and once in his own right. As befitting someone who is a little bit country and a little bit rock 'n' roll, Graham has shared the bill with everyone from The Clash to Patty Griffin, but his latest album is definitely on the grizzled-singer/songwriter end of the spectrum. Growling his way through damaged-survivor anthems, Graham is splendid — this is what Tom Waits would sound like if he'd done more screaming as a young man. Fellow Austin songwriter Mike June opens. DR
7:30 p.m. Lyon College. Free.
You have got to hand it to Davy Rothbart. The Michigan native has elevated a longtime habit of picking stuff up off the ground into a successful career in publishing, writing, filmmaking, This American Life-contributing and seemingly every other creative endeavor imaginable. Found Magazine, his brainchild, is exactly what it sounds like: a magazine of stuff people found. Of course, the stuff he (and the multitude of contributors who've made Found possible) happened upon is nearly always quite a bit more funny, heartbreaking and/or bafflingly awesome than your typical sidewalk ephemera and grocery store lists. One evening, many years ago, my best buddy and I were living in an East Coast hellhole and were walking to the bar like we did every night. He found a folded-up piece of paper covered in drawings of what I'll cautiously describe as suggestive and anatomically unlikely depictions of muscular nude men rendered in psychotically heavy pencil strokes. It was obvious from the get-go that he would have to send it to Found. Imagine my delight when, a couple years later, those works of amorous outsider art showed up in a volume called Dirty Found (take a wild guess about its nature). Rothbart tours often and came through Fayetteville several years ago. From what I remember of the evening, it was a pretty loosey-goosey affair, with Rothbart reading from Found and talking about finding cool stuff. I don't know, it was at a bar. This one's at a private college. I bet the vibe won't be all that different, though. Rothbart is a true raconteur. RB