Favorite

Turtle Creek Chorale comes to Little Rock 

And much more.

Rutha Harris - TRAVEL MEDIA PRESS ROOM
  • Travel Media Press Room
  • Rutha Harris

THURSDAY 6/21

RUTHA HARRIS

6 p.m. Clinton Presidential Center. Free.

"We were organized to tell the story of the struggle," Rutha Mae Harris said in a public service announcement by AARP. "Songs gave you an energy, a willingness and a wantingness to be free. Without the music, there wouldn't have been a movement." Harris — along with Bernice Johnson Reagon, Cordell Reagon, Charles Neblett and, later, Bill Perlman, formed The Freedom Singers, the group that would join Rita Moreno, Sidney Poitier and Charlton Heston on a plane Harry Belafonte chartered to attend the 1963 March on Washington. The group, a quartet formed when its members were students at Albany State College in Georgia, used songs like "Ain't Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around" and "Woke Up This Morning With My Mind on Freedom" to mobilize action during the civil rights movement as ambassadors of SNCC (Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee). By putting their voices and their bodies on the protest lines — sometimes to their peril; the singers' vehicle was shot at in Alabama — they encouraged others to do the same. Since those days, Harris has spent decades teaching school in Albany and, as she's seen doing on a video from the University of Pittsburgh, educating visitors to the Albany Civil Rights Museum by way of a call-and-response anthem. Here, Harris gives a talk and a performance in conjunction with the temporary Clinton Center exhibit "Louder Than Words: Rock, Power and Politics." It's free to attend, but organizers ask that you RSVP here or by calling 501-748-0425.

click to enlarge screen-shot-2015-08-26-at-3.57.00-pm-1024x902.png

THURSDAY 6/21

MOVE ORCHESTRA

9 p.m. Maxine's, Hot Springs. Free.

For fans of Caro or Radiohead or Low Island, Move Orchestra could very well be your new favorite local band. Three brothers based in Fayetteville create loops that unfold slowly and bloom delicately from within a dense assembly of bodies and cords and snare drums and soundboard knobs — occasionally with the aid of cellist Christian Serrano-Torres (see "Cuñao" below). It's a charmingly hi-fi act laced with falsetto and sudden changes of mood, picture perfect for pairing with cinematic or visual projects playing on a screen behind the group, as Move Orchestra often does in live performance. Catch Ryan, Connor and Cuinn Brogan now (and for no dollars) before the rest of the world catches on and they start getting asked to score screenings of 1928's "The Passion of Joan of Arc" live at Lincoln Center on the reg.

click to enlarge 'IT GETS BETTER': Catch the Turtle Creek Chorale on the chorus' "friendship tour" through Arkansas, Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana.
  • 'IT GETS BETTER': Catch the Turtle Creek Chorale on the chorus' "friendship tour" through Arkansas, Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana.

FRIDAY 6/22-SATURDAY 6/23

TURTLE CREEK CHORALE

7 p.m. Fri., Trinity Episcopal Cathedral; 10 a.m., Clinton Presidential Center; 7 p.m. Sat., Second Presbyterian Church.

Turtle Creek Chorale plays well with others. When the predominantly gay men's chorus isn't working up 200-voice renditions of "Santa, Baby" or Randall Thompson's "Last Words of David," it's in constant collaboration with other choruses and performing artists from around the globe. Their performance in a YouTube video titled "It Gets Better" in 2010 at the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center in their hometown of Dallas is a particularly poignant example. (Grab the Kleenex before you hit that "play" button, y'all. This is not a drill.) Now, in the Chorale's 39th season, they're on a four-city goodwill tour through Arkansas, Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana, with local choruses hosting them (and joining them on stage) along the way. Catch them at 7 p.m. Friday at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral (310 W. 17th St.), 10 a.m. Saturday morning in an abbreviated performance at the Clinton Presidential Center or 7 p.m. Saturday at Second Presbyterian Church (600 Pleasant Valley Drive) with the River City Men's Chorus. "Though communities on this tour may hold social and political views different from ours," Artistic Director Sean Baugh said on TCC's website, "we often share much more than we acknowledge. The best way to bridge those differences is with conversation and shared experiences. We hope this tour does just that by sharing musical experiences these communities may not have previously known via a huge chorus of primarily gay men singing about peace, acceptance, love and community." The concerts are free, but you'll need to reserve your seat at turtlecreekchorale.com/friendship-tour.

click to enlarge dead-boys-press-shot-2.jpg

FRIDAY 6/22

DEAD BOYS

9 p.m. White Water Tavern. $15.

Marketing being the fickle mechanism it is, The Sex Pistols get the lion's share of the credit for bringing sneering, lewd punk rock to the forefront of disco-weary listeners' minds in the late '70s. Unsurprisingly, the story of punk rock's birth was a little messier in real life, and the Dead Boys are undoubtedly one of the bands who went down in history as a footnote when they should have been the stuff of whole chapters. Occasionally bloody and violent, always contentious and snotty, the Cleveland outfit burned fast and furious for a few short years on the strength of their brutal live performances and a killer single, "Sonic Reducer," before breaking up in 1979. Guitarist Cheetah Chrome pins the dissolution squarely on Sire Records' Seymour Stein. Forty years later, drummer Johnny Blitz put together a lineup for South by Southwest and they burned through the entirety of their debut record, "Young Loud and Snotty." And, according to Paste magazine critic Robert Ham, they did so "with sweat and fire, wiping away all four decades of the past in the process." The Dead Boys are here (in part, at least; vocalist Stiv Bators died in 1990 and Chrome told Boston's WBUR-FM 90.9 last year, "I own the name and none of the other guys were interested in being involved with any of this stuff except for getting checks") for a show at The White Water Tavern, a place that's made a home for local punk rock with commendable consistency. As for the new Dead Boys iteration, as Chrome told the Huffington Post last November, "It's still just as loud and snotty, we're just old now." Pissin' Comets and Peach Blush open the show. 

click to enlarge Martina McBride - KRISTIN BARLOWE
  • Kristin Barlowe
  • Martina McBride

SATURDAY 6/23

MARTINA MCBRIDE

7 p.m. Magic Springs Theme and Water Park, Hot Springs.

Excepting, perhaps, a million-dollar lawsuit from a former employee that landed her in the headlines about a week ago, Martina McBride's fame is built on the stuff of country music dreams. Girl from Sharon, Kan., gets a big break to move from the merch table to an opening performance slot for Garth Brooks; scores big with tunes like "Independence Day" and "My Baby Loves Me"; drops a verse on a Kid Rock song featuring T.I.; uses the wonders of modern technology to record a duet with a long-gone Elvis. The soprano darling of early '90s country is in town as part of Magic Springs' summer series at the onsite Timberwood Amphitheater. The price for admission to Timberwood ranges from free to $10, but also depends on what sort of park pass you have ($36.99-$74.99), so it's best to head over to magicsprings.com and suss that out.

click to enlarge NUEVA CANCIÓN: Cuñao performs in Crystal Bridges' North Forest Saturday night, with an after-party featuring Pete Rock hosted by Bentonville radio station KOBV-FM, 103.3. - JACOB PFLUM
  • Jacob Pflum
  • NUEVA CANCIÓN: Cuñao performs in Crystal Bridges' North Forest Saturday night, with an after-party featuring Pete Rock hosted by Bentonville radio station KOBV-FM, 103.3.

SATURDAY 6/23

CUÑAO

7 p.m. Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville. $10.

Essex has Billy Bragg. Oklahoma has Woody Guthrie. Chile has nueva canción — the folk music movement that emerged from the Iberian Peninsula and served as a voice for dissent, speaking out against poverty, human rights infractions and totalitarian dictatorships in Latin America during the 1960s and 1970s. Cuñao, a Los Angeles-based group that weaves nueva canción elements with African rhythms and European melody, brings that accordion-cajon-djembe mix to the North Forest at Crystal Bridges as part of the museum's summer "Forest Concert Series." After an opening set from cellist/loop pedal artist Christian Serrano-Torres, the museum's website reads, Cuñao "will feature two new works with a musical excerpt and live puppetry of their folk opera titled 'Cancion Del Inmigrante' ('The Immigrant's song') and the song called 'Niños del Desierto.' " For a primer, check out the band's rendition of Puerto Rican traditional song "Wepa, Wepa, Wepa" recorded or its submission for NPR's Tiny Desk Competition, "Quita La Mano." The legendary DJ Pete Rock performs for the after-party at Record (104 S.W. A St., Bentonville), along with DJs/performers Theronious Chunk, Crazy Ups, Abboriginal and Todd of North America. Bring an extra $20 to the after-party, as it's a benefit for Bentonville radio station KOBV-FM, 103.3.

click to enlarge BETWEEN MAIN AND MAPLE: Adrienne Collins and Bonnie Earleywine (A+B) perform for Beers & Queers, a National Pride Day celebration in the Argenta Historic District of North Little Rock. - ANDREA LUNEAU SELLEW
  • Andrea Luneau Sellew
  • BETWEEN MAIN AND MAPLE: Adrienne Collins and Bonnie Earleywine (A+B) perform for Beers & Queers, a National Pride Day celebration in the Argenta Historic District of North Little Rock.

SUNDAY 6/24

BEERS & QUEERS

11 a.m.-4 p.m. Flyway Brewing, North Little Rock. Free.

Rhiannon Cortez, A+B, Spirit Cuntz, John Burnette, Stone's Throw Brewing, Bijoux, Count Porkula, The Clean Eatery, The Water Buffalo, Rock City Rescue and Flyway Brewing are teaming up with the Argenta Arts District and Kaleidoscope film festival to bring you a #sundayfunday of epic National Pride Day proportions, and all you have to do is show up in the name of equality and diversity. (And beer. And glitter.) Fourth Street between Main and Maple streets will be blocked off for the celebration and, as it's going to be in the neighborhood of 90 degrees, Flyway will be open should your fervor lead to a mandated cooling-off period. All ages are welcome, and if you're equipped to support the cause with more than just your unfettered enthusiasm, you can break out the plastic and buy a sponsorship at beersandqueers.com.

click to enlarge bi-live-10.jpg

SUNDAY 6/24

'BRING IT! LIVE'

7 p.m. Robinson Center. $35-$107.

Queen Bey can be credited with bringing a hip-hop majorette aesthetic to festival stages and football fields, but she certainly didn't invent it. Under the mantra "half time is game time," majorettes at historically black colleges have been stand battling and throwing hard shade for years, stealing the show from the players for a precious quarter-hour and elevating the dance form to a height of intensity and athleticism that makes cheerleading look like air traffic control. It is, as Jada F. Smith put it in an essay titled "How HBCU Majorettes Shaped My Idea of Black Womanhood," the realm of the fierce — and the fiercely feminine: "She, who has mastered the fine art of pinning a full set of tracks into a performance-ready ponytail. She, who has ballerina moves with the swag of 'Lackawanna Blues.' She, who over generations has perfected the all-important bleacher routine, aka 'stands,' aka 'grandstands,' and sees them popping up in music videos all over the world. Everything they do — from the way they sit to the way they stand to the way they walk out of a stadium — is sculpted and refined in a way that, to me, reflects a desire to celebrate and portray ourselves highly in a world that rarely does. The sequined headpieces that act as crowns, the cutouts in the leggings that embrace, not hide, large thighs, the capes that add an extra side of drama just because." That celebration, as portrayed (or caricatured, more likely) on Lifetime's reality television show "Bring It!" has been turned into a touring dance show, and its stars — Jackson, Miss.' "Dancing Dolls" troupe — bring those ensemble numbers and faceoffs to the stage at Robinson Center Performance Hall. See robinsoncentersecondact.com for tickets.

click to enlarge TUMBLEWEED: Grace Askew rolls into town for a Wednesday night show at The White Water Tavern.
  • TUMBLEWEED: Grace Askew rolls into town for a Wednesday night show at The White Water Tavern.

WEDNESDAY 6/27

GRACE ASKEW

9 p.m. White Water Tavern.

Here's hoping the televised auditions on NBC's "The Voice" are half as blind as they purport to be. That way, it's much harder for folks to attribute Memphis native Grace Askew's big break moment in 2013 to just her long Loretta Lynn locks and longer legs. The year 2013 was ages ago in music industry time, though, and Askew's since proved she can actually play that guitar that served mostly as a prop on the reality competition show — which is to say nothing of that buttery-rich alto that can flip into a high lonesome yodel when it needs to. She's been sweeping songwriting competitions with tunes like "Proof," rolling into the 200 stretch of a year-long, song-a-day writing challenge and generally proving her mettle as more than a "talent show artist" (as Askew said one Memphis reporter disparagingly referred to her while introducing himself for an interview). Catch her here, in a working-class dive bar built perfectly to let the self-described "bluntry" (blues + country) chanteuse channel her professed influences: Cat Power, Mahalia Jackson and Guy Clark.

Favorite

Sign up for the Daily Update email

Tags:

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Stephanie Smittle

Latest in To-Do List

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

 

© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation