Highlights- The Maybelles, Beppe Gambetta, Bikes, Blues & BBQ and more

Pop rock in town
Who says nothing’s going on in Springdale? The Pontiac Coffeehouse is giving a lot of new local bands a place to show their stuff and is also brining in some touring acts. This Monday night you can catch No More Kings at The Pontiac. Featured on E!, MTV.com and VH1.com, No More Kings’ music video for “Sweep the Leg” stars the original cast from “The Karate Kid” and “Mr. Belding” from “Saved by the Bell.” A version of the song was selected as music for a promo for the David Beckham Soccer USA show on the Fox Soccer Channel.

Fans of The Shins and Built to Spill won’t want to miss two pop rock bands that will play an all-ages show Wednesday night at the Dickson Theater. Omaha, Nebraska’s Little Brazil and 1090 Club from Billings, Montana will share the bill for a night of music that you won’t forget.

Two good at Goodfolk

Mike Shirkey, longtime host of KUAF’s  The Pickin’ Post and Goodfolk house concerts, has a fine roster of musicians lined up for the fall concert series at Goodfolk.

Monday night, Italian guitarist and vocalist Beppe Gambetta, will make a return visit to Goodfolk. The Genova native loves American bluegrass and country music and blends them with European folks songs. He is a respected songwriter and guitarist who has played with Dan Crary, Bela Fleck, David Grisman and others. Gambetta only makes it to the U.S. a couple of times a year, so catch him now or you may have to wait a while.

Coming to town to play Goodfolk next Thursday night, Oct. 11, are The Maybelles, who will be kicking off their CD release tour at Goodfolk. The Maybelles new album, ‘Leavin’ Town’ was produced and recorded by David Singleton of Fayetteville and is a first rate production.

The Maybelles—Jan Bell (guitar and harmonica), Melissa Carper (upright bass) and Katy Rose Cox (fiddle)—are an upbeat and charming trio that delivers Americana old-time country music in three-part harmony playing both their own originals and traditional favorites like the honky tunes of Hank Williams, Loretta Lynn and the Carter Family.

They split their time between Eureka Springs, Brooklyn, N.Y, Austin, Tex. and New Orleans. In New York they were popular performers at the Little Red Hen’s Urban Cowgirl Cabaret, playing from the back of an old  pickup truck near the Brooklyn Bridge.

The Maybelles will also play the Ozark Folk Festival in Eureka Springs opening for Odetta on Oct. 12 and for Trout Fishing in America on Oct. 13.

For tickets to Goodfolk performances call 521-1812.

On Stage and outdoors
This is the weekend when some folks want to stay inside and hide from the vroom, vroom of motorcycles. If you’re one of those people, there are several options that will keep you happy.

One of the funniest productions of the year will take place Friday and Saturday night at the Rogers Little Theater, when the Society of Professional Journalists stage their annual Gridiron Show. Each year local journalists take the stage to sing and dance, but mostly to show off their comedy-writing skills. They roast local newsmakers and tip their hats—er make fun of— some national newsmakers as well. The quality and cleverness of the show is a pleasant surprise for first-time Gridiron-goers and those who have have been before are always the first to line up for tickets for the new show.
Tickets are $25 and are available at the Rogers Little Theater or by calling 490-6072. Proceeds benefit the Society of Professional Journalist, the American Association of University Women and the Rogers Little Theater.

If you’re looking for drama, you can find it at the University Theater’s production of the Tony winning play Doubt, which opens Friday and runs through Oct. 14. Doubt is centered around the conflict between a “forward thinking” priest and nun who subscribes to “old school” Catholicism. It is a story of suspicion and moral certainty and is balanced with humor. Kris Stoker, Jenny Guy, Jenna Kirk, Christy Hall and Natasha Burroughs comlete the cast. Amy Herzberg directs. Tickets are $14 general admission. Fore reservations call 575-4752.

Another indoor activity that will be happening this weekend is the Hispanic Women’s Organization of Arkansas’ annual conference at the UA Continuing Education Building in downtown Fayetteville on Saturday. The event celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month with the theme “Citizenship: Reaching for the American Dream.” The conference will address the naturalization process that legal immigrants must navigate to become U.S. citizens. Alfonso Aguilar, Chief of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ Office of Citizenship, will be the keynote speaker. For information call 751-9494.

If you’d like to enjoy the outdoors, visit the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks this week during their grand opening. The gardens are located in north Fayetteville on the east side of Lake Fayetteville at 4703 Crossover Road. Opening activities include garden tours and Tai Chi classes. Activities will continue throughout the year and will include a dragon fly identification class and a holiday wreath show and auction. For information www.bgozarks.org or 750-2620.

Bikes, Blues and BBQ
The Free Weekly Picks: A quirky film, The Lee Boys, Jesse James

MUSIC PICK – The Lee Boys
If you’ve been to the New Orleans Jazz Fest, or if you’ve only just talked to someone who’s been to the festival, you know about the Gospel Tent. The music rocks like the 1812 earthquake that sent the Mississippi River flowing backwards. If you haven’t witnessed the Gospel Tent, you can imbibe in the spirit by getting out for The Lee Boys who will play BBBQ Main Stage Beer Garden at the corner of Dickson and West Streets at 8:45 p.m. Saturday.

The six-piece unit out of Miami, Fla. delivers a sound that’s loaded with a big dose of funk and blues and at times brings to mind the Neville Brothers. Pedal steel player Velt Collier ejects guitar licks so wicked that it could cause Billy Gibbons to set down his axe and say ‘wow.’ Driving the beat is Alvin Cordy Jr. on his seven string bass. This is a band on the rise. The Chicago Sun-Times calls The Lee Boys “part Robert Randolph, part Holmes Brothers….and may be what Jimi Hendrix had in mind with his grand plan for ‘electric sky church music.’” The performance will precede the Miss Bikes, Blues and BBQ finals at 10:15 p.m.

Here’s a list of other talented groups that will be playing free shows. All music will take place on the Main Stage, with the exception of the ZZ Top show, Friday at the Tyson Track Center. Tickets to ZZ Top are $39.50 and available at Sound Warehouse.

Main Stage Music Schedule
4 p.m. Mo Brothers
5:30 p.m. Chilly Moon
7 p.m. Little Hoojin
8:30 p.m. Gary Hutchison Trio
10:30 p.m.  Michael Burks

Noon Gary & John
1:45 p.m. Dave Stiles Band
3:30 p.m. Bob Kramer Incident
5 p.m.  TJ Scarlett Band
6:30 p.m. Oreo Blue
8:30 p.m. Nace Bros with Ernie & Earl Cate
10:30 p.m.  Chubby Carrier

1:15 p.m. Ben Miller Band
2:30 p.m. Leah & the Mojo Doctors
3:45 p.m. Big Bad Bubba
5:15 p.m. Big Un’s
7 p.m. Joe Giles & the Homewreckers
8:45 p.m. Lee Boys
10:15 p.m. Miss Bikes & Blues finals
11:15 p.m. Oteil & the Peacemakers

HUNK PICK- Jesse James. Jesse James is coming to BBBQ. James will be signing autographs all day Saturday at the Main Stage Beer Garden at Dickson and West Streets. James has built quite a little empire. The custom bike and car builder of West Coast Choppers fame only makes a makes a dozen or so bikes a year. He’s was the host of Discovery Channel’s Monster Garage, the creator of Garage Magazine and manages to keep up with movie star wife, Sandra Bullock.

FAMILY PICK – Parade of Power
One of the most family-friendly events of the festival is the Parade of Power, when the hundreds of bikes cruise by in formation showing off their iron horses. The parade will begin at 4 p.m. Saturday and takes a new route this year. Here’s the map.
Also this year, the vendor show and demonstrations will be at the Tyson Track Center.

This Friday night, you can ask an Oscar winning writer and director anything you want. We have no idea what Ray McKinnon’s quirky new comedy, Randy and the Mob, has to do with Bikes, Blues and BBQ-except that the film’s main character owns a BBQ joint-but we’re not complaining. McKinnon will answer questions from the audience after screening his new film Friday night at Fiesta Square Theater. At press time, film times had not been nailed down, so call the theater for details.

Fayetteville has been something of a good luck charm for McKinnon. His first film, The Accountant, which he wrote and directed, premiered at Fayetteville’s Hardshare Film Festival in 2001. A few months later McKinnon, his wife Lisa Blount–who was born in Fayetteville–and their Ginny Mule Pictures partner, Walt Goggins, accepted the Oscar for Best Live Action Short. (The highly regarded Hardshare was spearheaded by former Fayetteville resident, artist Kelly Moore, and Fayetteville filmmaker James Nash Alford, but the festival is now defunct).

McKinnon followed the clever and funny The Accountant by delving into tragedy with his first feature length film, the disastrous Chrystal, which was shot in Eureka Springs and starred Billy Bob Thornton. But the disappointing Chrystal should not cloud expectations of Randy and the Mob. McKinnon is back on track with his new comedy, Randy and the Mob.

In Randy and the Mob, McKinnon presents a story with universal meaning, but fringes it with the quirks, language and culture of lower middle class southerners. Goggins, Blount, McKinnon and the supporting cast, which includes Burt Reynolds, all give first-rate performances.

Goggins has a long list of TV and film credits, including The Shield and The Bourne Identity. McKinnon too has an impressive pedigree as an actor and may be best known for his hilarious fight with George Clooney in O Brother Where Art Thou. Blount received a Golden Globe nomination for an her role in Officer and a Gentleman.

Randy and the Mob is a look at life in the south, with multi-layered characters who want to understand and keep up with the rapidly changing world despite the fact that they have hardly any connections to the world outside their own little universe.

McKinnon’s Randy is a bumbling wheeler-dealer who manages Randy Pearson Enterprises, a struggling trio of businesses- a truck stop, BBQ joint and storage unit business-by cell phone from the cab of his fancy new pickup. He’s just a step ahead of the IRS, a couple of loan sharks and the local cop who is still holding grudges from high school. McKinnon also plays Randy’s gay twin brother, Cecil, who runs the perfect little gift shop, in contrast to Randy’s bungled business endeavors.

Goggins, in a more than memorable role, is sent by the mob to report on Randy’s activities. He plays Tino Armani, an Italian with a southern accent who has a penchant for fine clothes and gourmet cooking. The weird and mysterious Tino quadruples the business at Randy’s BBQ joint by switching the menu from the obligatory cholesterol laden fare to smoked salmon.

Although Blount had way too much screen time and drug down Chrystal, she pumps up Randy and the Mob in her role as an uninspired baton twirling and tap dance instructor, who has just been diagnosed with carpal tunnel or as Randy calls it ‘carpet” tunnel.

Ginny Mule’s decision to jump back into to comedy was a good one. Every element of the film has been fine tuned right down to the musical score by composer John Swihart–who also did the score for Napoleon Dynamite. The soundtrack ranges from Chopin, Bela Fleck, Squirrel Nut Zippers, My Morning Jacket to Andrew Bird. It’s a bit like the mix of characters that make Randy and the Mob a hilarious romp.

Categories: Legacy Archive