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Next four seek Showcase finals spot 

RIVERBILLY: Winner.
  • RIVERBILLY: Winner.

The Monks, Josh the Devil and the Sinners, the Kings of New England and Sao Paulo will line up Thursday, Feb. 2, at Sticky Fingerz in the second Arkansas Times Musicians Showcase semifinal to try and join Riverbilly in the March 3 final.

The local country-rock band Riverbilly, which went by the name of Sum of Us until just before the start of the Showcase, showed off both great harmonies and solid musicianship, particularly in the guitar work of Brad Rickett, to edge out rap artist Larry Johnon, a.k.a Trapper the Rapper, in last week’s semifinal.

One point separated the top two acts, and the margin between all four semifinalists was close. Conway’s Anxiety opened the semifinal with a powerful performance, but in the end may have been hurt by its position as the lead-off act, as Riverbilly was the fourth act of the night. The band of college students showed influences of Aerosmith at times. Fayetteville’s Thanks for Nothing, a trio, rocked with a powerful 30 minutes and solid songs as well. Johnson’s lyrics for his hip-hop songs impressed the room in his set.

This Thursday’s music will range from Americana to modern rock.

The music gets started at 9 p.m. at Sticky Fingerz in the River Market district. The cover charge is $5.

The remaining semifinalists and their scheduled performance dates are: Sandbox Lizards, the Cosmonauts, Hannah Blaylock and Eden’s Edge and Real Fighting, Feb. 9; Chris Loggins and Brass Tacks, Brighter Later, Starroy and the Key of Summer, Feb. 16; and Liquid Groove Mojo, Chris Henry, PM Today and Gringos, Feb. 23.


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