"History is always happening" at Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site
10 p.m., Juanita's, $15 adv., $17 d.o.s.
Named for the formative grade school location in lead singer John Wozniak's Minneapolis childhood, the alt/post-grunge trio Marcy Playground is perhaps best known for its 1997 hit, “Sex and Candy.” Wozniak's first effort, “Zog BogBean — From the Marcy Playground,” was self-produced in 1990 and recorded in his bedroom studio with help from then-girlfriend Sherry Fraser, after whom a future song was named. MP is quiet and minimalist in tone, covering styles such as modern folk, blurry psychedelia and unmistakable rock with undertones of children's tunes. The band's known for delivering deep cover tunes, having jammed on rarities by Jimi Hendrix, Grateful Dead and Neil Young. With four albums completed, including this year's “Leaving Wonderland … in a Fit of Rage,” due July 7, Marcy Playground comes to town on the verge of dropping another release, an untitled compilation of rarities. Little Rock's alt-experimental Falcon Scott opens the 18-and-up show. PP.
9 p.m., Peabody. $5.
In the absence of Power 92's annual Juneteenth concert, the RiverTop Party tries to fill the entertainment void with Sky High, a special one-off night curated by Cool Shoes' TJ Deeter and Chane “Epiphany” Morrow, the rapper and promoter behind the Chill. Both organizers multi-task. Deeter mans the ones and twos, with a mix of retro and contemporary hip-hop, while Epiphany fronts the live hip-hop band One Night Stand, one of the city's easiest bands to like. Familiar faces fill out the bill. With Epiphany, R&B crooner Sean West, who's going by Sean Fresh these days, recently put out a mixtape called “The Excuse.” To promote the CD, the pair compiled a video of 17 excuses people on the street give for not buying a local CD. It's a funny mini-documentary. Look for West to mix playful humor with earnest come-hither material. Prolific local MC Rockst*r has lately been gearing for a national push. He's toured regionally and in New York, and two weeks ago he released a crunchy, bass-heavy anthem that celebrates nightlife. It's called “1 A.M.” and he's billing it as his “national debut single.” It'll be a fitting end of the night. The party wraps up at 1 a.m. LM.
11 a.m., Ninth and Broadway to Ninth and State. Free.
Last year, Arkansas natives and Davidson College students Julian Walker and Darrel Scott made a short documentary about Power 92's annual Juneteenth concert that sought to expose the radio station's event as little more than a marketing ploy, with the history and importance of Juneteenth (a celebration of the Emancipation Proclamation) de-emphasized or not even mentioned at all. This year, the pair has teamed with the Little Rock NAACP to organize what Walker says is “not merely a celebration of the Emancipation Proclamation, but of the ongoing struggle for freedom by blacks in America.” To that end, the event features a diverse array of music, poetry, dance and lecture. Walker will offer a presentation called “Why Does Juneteenth Matter Today?” (11:45 a.m.), the text of which might be similar to an editorial Walker provided to the Times, which is posted on Rock Candy. As for music, there are a lot of familiar names on the bill — Rodney Block (2:45 p.m.), Epiphany (3:15 p.m.), Ron Mc (4:15 p.m.), 4X4 Crew (5:15 p.m.), Shea Marie (6:15 p.m.), Nikki Parish (7:15 p.m.) — along with other intriguing if less known ones, including Queen Esther, a gospel singer from Kenya (12:45 p.m.), and the Gloryland Pastor Choir (1 p.m.). There'll be food and drink vendors on the street. The event runs until 8 p.m. LM.
Congratulations Tara, beautifully written!