Riverfest Saturday: Go see Velvet Kente | Rock Candy

Riverfest Saturday: Go see Velvet Kente


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Heart, Buddy Guy, Dale Hawkins and Heart (clockwise)

There's good stuff early today, particularly Bonnie Montgomery's two folk acts, the Shelby Avenue Baptist Singers and Montgomery Trucking, from 2:30 to 4 p.m. But the real conflicts, as I see it, don't really get going until late afternoon.

4:30 p.m.

Nik and Sam (Miller Lite Amphitheater) vs. Epiphany and One Night Stand (Triple-S, NLR). Two Times Showcase vets, both of which always put on fun shows. Nik and Sam seem like they could be the Jonas Bros. of country music, and Piph and co. do live-band rap better than anyone around.

6 p.m.

Velvet Kente (Triple-S, NLR) GO SEE THIS BAND. This year's winner of the Musicians Showcase plays a blend of funk, rock and Afro-beat that's mesmerizing to see live. They should sound particularly good on a big system.

7:30 p.m.-7:45 p.m.

Chris Denny (Arkansas Tent) vs. Patrick Sweany (Triple-S, NLR). North Little Rock's golden-throated folk singer and super-tight band or the incredibly gifted Ohio blues/soul/guitar whiz? Why not both? They're close enough.

9:30 p.m.

Heart (Bud Light Stage, Clinton Center) vs. Buddy Guy (Triple-S) vs. Dale Hawkins vs. the American Princes (Revolution). 70s/80s rock to sing along to? One of the last truly monumental blues guitarists? An Arkansas rockabilly treasure who doesn't seem to have many shows left in him? Or Little Rock's favorite indie rockers geeking out over 90s covers at Revolution? It's too tough.

I know I'll end up at Revolution, but otherwise, I don't have any idea what I'll decide. Or maybe the rain will decide for me.

More on the Princes after the jump.


9:30 p.m., Revolution.

This is an inspired idea for a Riverfest post-party. After opening for post-grunge hero Gavin Rossdale on Friday at Riverfest, Little Rock's finest band on the national scene offers what it's calling “120 Minutes of '90s Hits.” That means songs from Alice and Chains, Blur, Counting Crows, the Cure, Foo Fighters, Gin Blossoms, Pavement, Pearl Jam, the Pixies, Presidents of the United States of America, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Toad the Wet Sprocket. And that's just the ones vocalist/guitarist Collins Kilgore could think of off the top of his head. Those who've seen a Princes' cover night know that A) they're committed to dressing the part, and B) they're really, really good at playing covers. I suppose a big piece of that comes with simply being a professional band with all the requisite skill to play a lot of different stuff, but I think the dudes might have a special aptitude for covers. Bonus preparation: Peep the show's flyer on Rock Candy. The band's faces have been attached to the famous photo of the Chili Peppers, nude and junk-cupping

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