Sarah Woolf of Follow the Woolf has your guide to Arkansas’ music scene, in Little Rock and beyond. We all know Riverfest is this weekend, but if that’s not your thing, or you need a place for the afterparty, here are some suggestions.
Around Little Rock
Patio on Park Hill, Lakehill Shopping Center, North Little Rock, 5-10 p.m., $3 (kids 12 & under free) – Hosted by the Park Hill Business & Merchants Association. Come enjoy one of the most unique neighborhoods in Central Arkansas at this fun family friendly event with food trucks and lots of great local music. Main Stage acts: Jamie Lou and the Hullabaloo, The Wildflower Revue and the Rodney Block Collective. In the beer garden you’ll find Ben Byers, Joe Darr and Brian Nahlen. Pets on a leash and folding chairs are welcome.
Music in the Garden, Dunbar Garden 1720 S. Chester, Little Rock, 6-8 p.m., $5 (kids 12 & under free) – Come enjoy an evening in this garden oasis with the sounds of that guitar man Jason Lee Hale. Food, drinks, and s’mores will be available for purchase and donations.
Greyhounds, White Water Tavern, 2500 W. 7th St., Little Rock, 9 p.m.-12 a.m., $10 – This duo out of Austin, Texas started off as a songwriters for artists such as Susan Tedeschi and Derek Trucks while working on their own craft. Now with a sound that has been described as “Hall & Oates meets ZZ Top,” they signed a three-album deal of their own with Ardent Music starting with 2014’s Accumulator and more recently the soulful Change of Pace. A show like this in such an intimate setting is a special thing; don’t miss it. Advanced tickets available here: http://www.lastchancerecords.us/greyhounds-at-the-white-water-tavern-05-24-tickets
Ten Penny Gypsy with Buddy Case, YaYa’s Euro Bistro, Little Rock, 6:30 p.m.-? – The patio at YaYa’s is a favorite of the residents of West Little Rock for its atmosphere, great food, drinks, and in the spring and summer, great music. This Friday they welcome the folk duo Ten Penny Gypsy with their friend Buddy Case on guitar. Come see why this duo has become a favorite of the Central Arkansas music scene, and has now been nominated for multiple 2018 Arkansas Country Music Awards including Album of the Year, Americana/Roots Artist of the Year, and Vocal Group of the Year. (Ask for “Old Woman by the Sea,” it’s my favorite.)
Big Piph, Dazz & Brie, & Kyle Hubbard, White Water Tavern, doors at 9 p.m., show 10 p.m.-2 a.m., $9 – With these three acts and DJ Greyhound and his legendary turntables, need I say more. This is one of those nights you grab your girls and grab your guys and get out and dance. This will be a high energy show of some of the best hip hop, R&B and rock in the Rock.
One Love’s Friday Night Reggae Party, 109 & Co. 109 Main St. Little Rock, 9 p.m.-1 a.m. $7 – Top Reggae DJ’s KemyDan and Ras Levi (from KABF’s 88.3 One Love Reggae party Thursdays 5 p.m.-7 p.m.) and others will be spinning some of the best reggae music, Chef Charles will have some awesome jerk chicken wings, and Derrick will be pouring Caribbean drink specials. Just a couple of blocks from the Riverfest festivities; sounds like the perfect afterparty to me.
Good Foot, Blue Canoe Brewing Warehouse, 1637 E. 15th St. Little Rock, 9 p.m. – If you haven’t been to the new Blue Canoe Brewing Warehouse here is the perfect opportunity. This is a special night of all-original music from one of Little Rock’s favorite jam bands, some you’ve heard before and some new ones for ya. Come enjoy some tasty Little Rock brews and DANCE!
The Matchsellers with The Chemtrailblazers, Four Quarter Bar, Argenta , $7, 10 p.m.-2 p.m. – The Matchsellers, out of Warsaw, Indiana, are musical performance artists with a knowledge, dedication and respect for American folk music and a focus on humor and absurdity. Their opening act, The Chemtrailblazers, are a new experimental bluegrass band from here in Little Rock with a special sound of blended harmony and some of the hottest fiddle and mandolin and bass playin’ you’ll find. With one of the best late night kitchens open till 1:30 a.m., this late-night spot has it all.
Lincoln Durham with The Ghost Wolves, Stickyz Rock ’N’ Roll Chicken Shack, 107 River Market Ave., Little Rock, 9-11:45 p.m., $10 – This “Southern-gothic-psycho-blues revival-punk one man band wrecking crew” returns to the chicken shack with Ghost Wolves out of Austin, Texas. Enough said. See this show!
American Aquarium with Cory Branan, Revolution Music Room, 300 President Clinton Ave. Little Rock, 9-11:45 p.m., $12 advanced $15 day of show – This is a show the Americana fans of Central Arkansas have been looking forward to. American Aquarium, with front man BJ Barham, has been burning up the road for nearly a decade with songs of the everyman (and everygirl) to the classic roots rock sound. Branan is a singer-songwriter from Mississippi born in Memphis, Tennessee; he has performed on David Letterman and received rave reviews from Rolling Stone. If you’re not familiar with these names, fans of Americana artists such as Lucero and Jason Isbell should not miss this. Advanced tickets recommended: http://www.arkansaslivemusic.com/.
Pure White Smoke, All White Affair with the Rodney Block Collective, Cajun’s Wharf 2400 Cantrell Rd. Little Rock, 9 p.m.-?, $15 – It’s Memorial Day weekend, time to break out those white outfits that have been in your closet, and what better way to show them off than this party with the Rodney Block Collective. This night will feature the Collective with a special guest, and the unforgettable music feature, the Soul Cypher. With a post-concert cigar party on the deck this is a “grown folks night” not to be missed.
Ladies Night Out featuring Tawanna Campbell, Valerisse and Butterfly, GiGi’s Soul Cafe & Lounge, 10840 Maumelle Blvd. Maumelle, 9 p.m., $20 VIP, $15 GA – Ladies, grab your girls for this fabulous ladies night out featuring three of Little Rock’s hottest Soul Divas. If you’ve seen them separately, together, or if this is your first time, lovers of R&B, soul and reggae are in for a treat.
Brier Fest, May 25-27, Greenbrier High School, FREE – Come on out and enjoy this free festival of concerts, rides, food, crafts, car show, pageant, games, and more. www.brierfest.com
Big Piph, Dazz & Brie, Table of Mahogany, Maxine’s, 700 Central, 8 p.m. – Come out and enjoy some of the best hip hop, and R&B with Big Piph and Dazz & Brie from Little Rock and Hot Springs’ own Table of Mahogany. This will be a fun, high-energy show to keep your holiday weekend going.
Boom Kinetic, George’s Majestic Lounge, 9 p.m., $10, 18 and up – Come party with one of Arkansas’ favorite party bands on their home turf. Dance to the classics and their original music. Fans of artists like MGMT and the Killers to Michael Jackson and Justin Timberlake are sure to enjoy.
Creekfest, May 25-27, $80 for all 3 days, $70 for 2, $25 for one, $20 for Sunday. Children 10 and under free – During this three-day music and camping festival on the banks of the Big Piney creek, you’ll enjoy swimming, canoeing, kayaking and the wonderful nature in the foothills of the Ozark National Forest as you listen to music from Grouv Therapy, Moonshine Mafia, Adam Faucett, Vintage Pistol, Jamie Lou and the Hullabaloo, Caleb Martin, Mudhawk and many more. For more info: www.bigpineycreekfest.com