Border Cantos is a timely, new and free exhibit now on view at Crystal Bridges.
8:30 p.m., Windsong Performing Arts Center. $35
Some enterprising sort ought to option Jody Evans' life story. It might be the stuff of a biopic, albeit an offbeat one. Here's the pitch: As a child in Prairie Bayou, Ark., Evans wore glasses and suits and ties to school to emulate Clark Kent. But after seeing Buddy Holly (or at least Marshall Crenshaw as Buddy Holly) in “La Bamba,” he kept the suits and the glasses, but redirected his focus on playing music like Holly. Soon he started entering talent shows whenever he could. He managed to place third in one for the Arkansas Association of Blacks in Energy — a young white kid with a pompadour doing Buddy Holly songs for a predominantly black audience. Another brought him in contact with the brass at Sun Studios, who asked him to make a record. Without any original material and a limited window in which to record, he had to come up with six songs in just five days. Those sessions didn't catapult him into fame — or even get released — but they did get passed around within the industry. When Dale Hawkins heard them, he said Evans was the best songwriter he'd ever heard. Through an Arkansas connection, Dwight Yoakam heard Evans' “Sittin' Pretty” and decided to record it. Then, in 2005, Evans' had his brightest moment in the spotlight, when he placed third on the “Nashville Star” reality TV show. Through the promises and pitfalls of music, Evans has alternated between Nashville and the Arkadelphia police force. Still slightly pompadoured, bespectacled and apt to wear a suit and tie, Evans is sure to mix his rockabilly rave-ups with Buddy Holly classics for the home-state crowd.
CHRISTOPHER DENNY/ GOINES
9 p.m., White Water Tavern. $5.
Localistmagazine.com has long been fond of putting wildly different acts on the bills for its promo concerts. At its web launch party several years back, the gritty and often lewd rap collective Grim Muzik played along with Blair Harris, a lo-fi rocker still in high school; folky singer/songwriter Sarah Thomas and the Contingencies, a pop-rock foursome. That same formula is at work on the latest Localist party, a concert to celebrate the relaunch of the magazine's website. Expect Christopher Denny, the golden-voiced local singer, to be in fine form. He's just gotten married (to M.C. Ferguson, a founding partner in the White Water management team) and two weekends ago he triumphantly celebrated the national release of his sophomore album, “Age Old Hunger,” with two full-house shows. Pine Bluff rapper Goines co-headlines. The fashion-forward half of Suga City, Goines favors laid-back, soul-infused samples and spits with a thick Southern drawl, laying out his thoughtful lyrics deliberately, so that no one misses a word. His debut mixtape, “Lead by Example,” is easily one of the best local albums of the year thus far. Beeping Slag, a DJ collective comprised of ATM, DJ I.K.E. and TJ Deeter, the publisher of Localist.
9 p.m., Sticky Fingerz. $7.
Formed by long-time members of Harry Connick's band, Bonerama takes pieces of the funk, jazz and brass traditions in New Orleans and points them toward rock 'n' roll. Even with five pieces of brass, they're far from a brass band. Four trombonists hold down the band's frontline, and a Sousaphone player handles low-end, emitting deep, funky notes like a slapped bass. A drummer, on a traditional drum kit, and an electric guitarist round out the line-up. They come to town in support of “Bringing It Home,” their newly released live album recorded at the legendary New Orleans venue Tipitina's. There's original material on the album, but it's the covers that really convey the band's M.O. The seven-piece takes on Led Zeppelin's “Ocean” and two songs from “The White Album,” “Yer Blues” and “Helter Skelter.” No meaty guitar riffs here, though — the trombones get to have all the fun.
9 p.m., White Water. $5.
Call it research. Singer/songwriter Jonathan Wilkins moonlights as the doorman at White Water. As hundreds of folks walk past him throughout the week, he's got endless opportunities for inspiration. Then, there's all that live music to overhear. Tonight, it's the Hendrix grad's turn. Claiming influence from acts like Townes Van Zandt, Bob Marley and Against Me!, Wilkins is likely to get percussive with his acoustic guitar on alt-country foot stompers like “Mrs. Huxtable,” a romantic ode to “The Cosby Show” mom. Also, he'll devote at least part of the show to covers of songs by one of his primary local influences, Kevin Kerby. Mammoth Orange, a new group formed in the ashes of Tin Fire Radio, will open. The six-man band is still honing its atmospheric instrumental rock — its only had one prior show — but the young group definitely shows signs of promise.
ROCK & ROAR
7 p.m., Little Rock Zoo. $8.
Nestled in between the lemur and spider monkey islands and the chimpanzees and orangutans, the Little Rock Zoo's Civitan Amphitheater will play host to the first in a planned series of “Rock and Roar” concerts by local Max Recordings artists. The Easys headline. Most of the members of the deliriously infectious pop-rock outfit play in at least three other bands, and lately, Easys' shows have been few and far between. Fayetteville's the Good Fear also make a rare appearance. For the last six months or so, the band has been holed up in studios in Fayetteville and Little Rock crafting the follow-up to their stellar debut “Keep in Touch.” They're sure to debut some of their new material. Expect swirling, epic rock arrangements from the six-piece. A stripped-down version of the jangly rock group Pants also perfoms. A taco truck will be on hand, selling what Max head-dude-in-charge Burt Taggart swears are the best pork tacos in town. Beer and wine will also be on sale. The event is all ages.
HOT SPRINGS JAZZ FEST
12 p.m., Downtown Hot Springs. Free.
Hot Springs keeps on kickin' out the festivals. After last week's big blues event, Spa City gives the weekend over to another uniquely American genre. On Friday, Gary Tole and the Legends of Swing kick off the 16th Annual Hot Springs JazzFest with a tribute to Benny Goodman at the convention center. Billed as both a concert and a dance, the event is the only ticketed show of the weekend ($25 via Ticketmaster). On Saturday, there'll be live jazz almost all day under the sky-bridge of Broadway and Market Streets. Bonerama, the New Orleans trombone-led band, headlines the festival after their Sticky Fingerz performance on Friday, with a funky set at 6 p.m. Earlier throughout the day, ATM (Anything That Moves) plays four sets — at 1:50, 2:50, 4:30 and 5:50. The local collective varies in size between six to ten pieces and takes on modern jazz as well as funkier stuff. Jazz Xtreme, a 20-piece from Central Arkansas, is another highlight on Saturday. The big band's repertoire ranges from standards from the '20s and '40s to be-bop and some modern jazz. They play at 4:40. The Village Dixielanders, Arkansas Jazz Orchestra, NuFusion, the Hot Springs Scholarship Combo and the Navy's Mid-South Brass Ensemble also perform. On Sunday, St. Luke's Episcopal Church will host a jazz mass at 9:30 a.m.; the Air Force “Shades of Blue” Jazz Ensemble performs from 3-5 p.m. at the Oaklawn Magnet School Auditorium; and Brau Haus hosts a jam session from 6-9 p.m. anchored by the JazzCats. All Sunday events are free.
TROUT FISHING IN AMERICA
1 p.m., Museum of Discovery. $10, $5 for children.
Folk-rock favorites Trout Fishing in America help the Museum of Discovery celebrate “80 Years of Discovery.” Popular among kids and adults like, the duo — made up of Keith Grimwood on bass and Ezra Idlet on guitar — is an incongruous pair. Grimwood is five feet five, while Idlet towers over him at six foot nine. Together for more than 20 years, the duo is touring to promote their Grammy-nominated release “My Best Day,” on which you'll find songs geared at kids, with songs about friends who talk too much and cleverly kooky hooks about alien nose invasions and snowflakes named Bob. Brian and Terri Kinder, a local acoustic duo, open the concert at 3 p.m. Their latest album, “I Like Being a Kid,” hints at their subject matter. Prior to the show, the museum will host a variety of activities including a dino dig and face painting.
9 p.m. Sticky Fingerz, $10 adv./$12 d.os.
Oklahoman Jason Boland sounds like your typical country-rock crooner. For nearly ten years, he's been hammering out songs about hard work, hard drinking and honky-tonk heroes, summoning up that dusty old Outlaw spirit. With lyrics like “I'll be a bourbon legend long after I'm gone," it appears he hopes to leave a similar legacy. Having spent time in Texas, his big baritone has a Southern swagger to it. On “Up and Gone” off of his latest album 2006's “The Bourbon Legend,” you can hear his deep drawl, which has drawn comparisons to Hank Williams Jr. While Boland's backed by his band, a solid assemblage of pedal steel and slide guitar virtuosos, on the album, for Monday's show at Sticky Fingerz, he'll leave the Stragglers behind, opting instead for an acoustic set.
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