"History is always happening" at Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site
'ALWAYS ... PATSY CLINE'
6 p.m., Murry's Dinner Playhouse. $31.
Its flood damage repaired, Murry's is back, running and opening its newest production, "Always ... Patsy Cline." The everlasting bio-musical follows the sudden friendship between the iconic but doomed country music star and Louise Seger, the Houston housewife and fan who became a pen-pal and unexpected confidante to Cline. Local actress Sarah Haman, who was the Patsy Cline understudy for The Rep's celebrated 2009 revival of the play, tackles the titular role yet again for this production. But Candyce Hinkle — most recently seen as landlady Mrs. Floyd in the Coens' reboot of "True Grit" — may be the main attraction, since she's played the role of Louise in productions since the mid-'90s. "Always ... Patsy Cline" runs through June 26, with evening performances every Tuesday through Sunday and matinees on Sunday and Wednesday.
THE VERVE PIPE
10 p.m., Juanita's. $12 adv., $15 d.o.s.
If you're hunting down the formula for radio-friendly, mid-'90s grunge-pop, it's time to revisit The Verve Pipe. The Michigan rockers didn't invent the formula, they didn't hone it and, as far as I can tell, they certainly didn't try to improve on it. But they sure as hell followed it to the millimeter and profited. Soul patches, bleached hair, stark black and white music videos, super-size brooding: all there. (From 2011, things sure seem easier back in that post-"My So-Called Life"/pre-"Dawson's Creek" rock world.) The band worked that angle so skillfully that, well, years later it's a viable option for a Wednesday night. And seeing how modern rock hasn't really progressed much in the last 15 years, I guess you might say that The Verve Pipe still sounds fresh. One thing's for sure, though: "The Freshmen" is still untouchable.
8 p.m., Revolution. $15 adv., $20 d.o.s.
Rick Rubin earned his applause over the last decade by dusting off and resurrecting Johnny Cash (and, to a lesser extent, Neil Diamond). And lately, Jack White, another sonic eccentric, has tried to recreate a little Rubin-esque magic, finding potential muses in the ladies of his own record collection. In 2004, he created unlikely chemistry with Loretta Lynn on "Vanlear Rose," a modern classic by anyone's estimation. Now he's resuscitated another member of music royalty, the Queen of Rockabilly herself, Wanda Jackson, with her return to national attention in this year's "The Party Ain't Over." The album tries (and — spoiler alert — succeeds in) reframing the taboo-breaking trailblazer for the 2010s. Fortunately, with Jack White behind the board, 2011 sounds a lot like 1959, plus or minus a few welcomed, blaring horn sections from the Mark Ronson playbook. (Speaking of, Wild Wanda sounds outstanding on the album's cover of Amy Winehouse's "You Know That I'm No Good.") Amazingly, Jackson still sounds better than a dance-hall full of her imitators; those hiccup-style vocals are needed now more than ever and her signature purr/growl can still make a young man slobber. Regardless, here's your chance to see a literal living legend (and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer) back at the top of her game. Also, it's probably the only time this year you'll see youngster knuckleheads and the blue hair brigade shimmy together. Holly Golightly & the Brokeoffs, the British garage rockers and Rockabilly disciples, open the night with their first Little Rock show in a year.
10 p.m., White Water Tavern.
Along with Jon Snodgrass, Austin Lucas, our boy Ben Nichols and countless other loosely-affiliated White Water Tavern regulars, Cory Branan and that whole alt-country happening has spent years molding a New Americana sound. A lot of people, in Little Rock especially, love it. It makes some people irate. But after you sift out all of the opinions and attitudes toward the genre, you've gotta admit that Cory Branan can flesh out one hell of a song. The animated Memphian takes cues from John Prine's quick wit and punk/metal at large's fiery guitar-picking. He nipped at widespread success years ago, even appearing on Letterman with his signature song, "Miss Ferguson," and, recently, his "Tall Green Grass" has found its way into set-lists from (no laughing) Dashboard Confessional. But here, he's just a dude at the bar with a penchant for getting drunk enough to climb up on that very bar for his encore.