As earlier reported on our entertainment blog, Rock Candy, there are big doings along the Seventh Street corridor downtown: Norman Jones, the owner of Backstreet and Discovery, is taking over Easy St. Piano Bar, 307 W. Seventh St., pending approval of beer and wine permits by the ABC.
Jones plans to spend November and December remodeling and open in mid-January.
Initially, he plans to call the bar simply That Piano Bar, though he says he'll encourage customers to drop name ideas into a box, from which he'll eventually choose a permanent name.
The general atmosphere of the place will remain largely unchanged, Jones says. Regular Easy Street performer Buddy Habig will stay on as entertainment director. Jones says Habig will "upgrade the talent" and that he's already booked the club through January and possibly as far as April.
As Easy Street occasionally did, Jones plans to host live acts, for a cover charge, in the bar's adjacent cabaret room.
If that wasn't enough, Jones is also opening a martini bar around the corner at 610 Center in the space where Lam Garden Chinese Restaurant used to be.
Jones describes the bar, which will be called 610 Center, as an upscale lounge, which he says are in short supply in Little Rock. The bar, again pending ABC approval, will serve beer, liquor and wine. It, too, is scheduled open around mid-January.
Both bars will be open Monday through Saturday, from 4-11 p.m. during the week and 4-midnight on the weekend. 610 Center will offer happy hour daily, from 4-7 p.m., with finger foods.
Mark your calendars: Musical collagist and king of the dance floor Greg Gillis, AKA Girl Talk, is coming to Revolution on Feb. 12 for $15. The show is open to all ages. Look for Girl Talk's latest, “Feed the Animals,” to rank high on end-of-the-year lists everywhere.
Mark your calendars again: Country star Brad Paisley is coming to Alltel Arena on Jan. 16. Tickets range from $32.50 to $46.50 and go on sale on Saturday. Former Hootie and the Blowfish front man Darius Rucker opens along with Dierks Bentley.
Last week, the Boxmasters, the “electric hillbilly” band fronted by Billy Bob Thornton, released “Christmas Cheer” on Vanguard, a 12-song collection of seasonally flavored originals.