- Brian Chilson
- PSYCHEDELTA: Tyrannosaurus Chicken brings its deconstructed blues to the White Water Tavern Thursday night, 9 p.m., $10.
9 p.m. White Water Tavern. $10.
Since "psychedelta" purveyors Rachel Ammons and Bob Lewis teamed up with The Ben Miller Band, chances to see the 2011 Arkansas Times Musicians Showcase champions have been few and far between. They are here to remind us all that their band is still making its mad science, deconstructing the Delta blues and putting it back together with electric cactuses, kick drum rigs and whatever other instruments they've conjured up from the lab. This one's probably gonna get weird, and you're best advised to just give in and get weird right along with it. SS
9 p.m. Maxine's. Free.
Maxine's in Hot Springs has been making a habit of putting wildly talented touring acts on stage unceremoniously on a Thursday night and not charging anyone for the privilege of hearing them. This concert follows suit. Last up is Caleb Elliott, a guy who's probably got every right to look at Jason Isbell playing to a crowd of thousands and think to himself, "Hey, I could do that." The Lafayette, La., guitarist's songwriting sensibility seems to come easily; it's never overwrought, always finessed, and the five years elapsed since his 2012 album "Where You Wanna Be" have clearly been transformative ones, washing away the '90s pop sheen and revealing an intense, plaintive sound. If you're asking me, skip that early stuff and check out his more recent work: "Don't Go Losing Your Head" or "Get Me Out of Here" on YouTube, for starters, recorded earlier this year at Shreveport's Foxtrot Studios. If it sounds like his guitar arpeggios have some classical training behind them, they do; Elliott's a talented cellist, which you can hear on a scant few Spotify offerings in French — a collaboration with Ann Savoy and Jane Vidrine. Elliott's stop in Hot Springs is one of a few he's sharing with fellow Secret Stages performers Della Ray (Natalie and Adam Morrow); the show opens with Joe Sundell. SS
9 p.m. Stickyz Rock 'n' Roll Chicken Shack. $8.
Spoonfed Tribe is drums, drums and more drums, with some horns and bass guitar peppered in, and it's proof that a band can fit loosely into the "jam" category without sacrificing an ounce of precision. The band's become known in its native Texas for involving the audience in its show dynamic, because evidently there's a lot less chance of some sloppy handclaps mucking things up if you've got an army of percussion instruments to drown it out. If you have ever owned a Trey Anastasio album and played it more than twice, this show is a pretty safe bet. Conway quartet Motherfunkship, which self-describes as a band that "sounds like the love child of Umphreys McGee, TAUK, Phish, Papadosio and RHCP [Red Hot Chili Peppers]," opens the show. SS
2ND FRIDAY ART NIGHT
5-8 p.m. Downtown art galleries. Free.
You'll have to act fast Friday to take in all of the offerings for this month's 2nd Friday gallery walk: There are several new exhibitions, lots of music, a fundraiser and a gallery talk. The Butler Center Galleries, in the Arkansas Studies Institute building at 401 President Clinton Ave., opens "The Art of Injustice," and its curator, Dr. Sarah Freeman, will talk about the show at 7 p.m.; read more about it on page 12. "Jim Nelson: Abstractions and Color" also opens at the Butler Center Galleries. The Historic Arkansas Museum (200 E. Third St.) opens "Danny Campbell and Winston Taylor," sculpture by University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff professor Campbell and ceramics by Taylor, the 2011 Arkansas Living Treasure; there will also be Arkansas brew and music by Ten Penny Gypsy. At the Cox Creative Center (120 River Market Ave.), see paintings by North Little Rock artist Theresa Cates; at the Old State House Museum (300 W. Markham St.), hear the music of Runaway Planet and check out exhibits "Cabinet of Curiosities: Treasures from the University of Arkansas Museum Collection" and "True Faith, True Light: The Devotional Art of Ed Stilley." Head to the "Summer Shindig" at Bella Vita (523 Louisiana St., in the Lafayette Building) for a fundraiser — lubricated by beer by Lost Forty — for The Van, which assists the homeless. There's one more stop to make: Matt McLeod Fine Art (108 W. Sixth St.), to see "Intersections," multimedia work by Marianne Fairbanks, assistant professor in design studies at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and textiles by Little Rock designer Leigh Jacobs. McLeod will host a reception for "Intersections" on Thursday evening as well, same hours; make that one if your Friday night is too crowded. LNP
- TRAILBLAZER: Cheryl Dunye, director of the 1996 landmark film, "The Watermelon Woman," will receive the Kaleidoscope Film Festival's Trailblazer Award at this year's festivities.
FRIDAY 8/11-SATURDAY 8/19
KALEIDOSCOPE FILM FESTIVAL
Various times. Argenta Community Theater, South on Main, Argenta Gallery, Flyway Brewing. Free-$350.
If you were in the crowd at last year's Kaleidoscope Festival, you may have marveled that the dazzling movie "White Nights" was made by Mark Thiedeman — a local, someone whose house you may have driven past, who might have been next to you at the grocery counter. You may have heard Miss Major Griffin-Gracy school everyone in the room with her ability to simultaneously be Queen Bestower of Side-eye and 100 percent Bottomless Well of Empathy. You might have experienced all of that — or just a slice of it — and thought the festival's second year just happened to be a really, really good one. You wouldn't be wrong. This year, though, Kaleidoscope is going even bigger. First, there's the reason for it all: the film screenings, many of which will be attended by the director or lead actor. Opening night features, appropriately, "Hello Again," which Thiedeman, now director of feature film programming, describes as a "wild, funny, shape-shifting musical that bounces from decade to decade — and bedroom to bedroom — in its depiction of 10 steamy love affairs." There's "Saturday Church," a film based on director Damon Cardasis' personal experiences volunteering at a homeless LGBT youth outreach program; "The Untamed," a "bold, creepy melodrama drawn from actual headlines," Thiedeman notes, and "The Wound," in which South African singer Nakhane (formerly Nakhane Toure) — who was recruited to help score the film and ended up as its lead actor — plays a factory worker overseeing a Xhosa circumcision ritual. There are short films, comedies, movies made in Arkansas, documentaries (if you've not seen it, don't miss "The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson"), a campy web series about living with HIV, hallmark films by openly gay directors ("Scorpio Rising," "The Watermelon Woman," whose screening will be attended by director Cheryl Dunye), movies about drag culture, festival darlings and underdogs. To complement the screenings, Kaleidoscope is holding several auxiliary events at South on Main: Patrons can have dinner and conversation with the venerable Armistead Maupin, who's to be presented with the Kaleidoscope Career Achievement in Literature Award, 6 p.m. Monday, Aug. 14, $45; a meal with Crystal "Chef Pink" Delongpre and Courtney Rae of Solvang, Calif., restaurant Bacon & Brine, 6 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 13, $100; and a Drag Queen Brunch featuring Rhiannon Cortez, 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 19, $17-$20. Also, catch "Film Flash Focus Record: A Glimpse into Queer Cinema," works on paper by Michael Shaeffer at Argenta Art Gallery, which will host a reception for the artist from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 11, and "Songs of Ourselves: A Queer Literary Salon," for which Sibling Rivalry press has invited Arkansas LGBTQ writers to share their own work and the work of those who influenced them, 7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 16, Flyway Brewing. For passes and a full schedule, visit kaleidoscopefilmfestival.com. SS
- FAMILY BAND: Fayetteville's Route 358 takes its bluegrass-influenced sound to The Undercroft Friday night.
8 p.m. The Undercroft, Christ Church. $10.
This little Fayetteville-based quartet is a true family band — the bass player, Jodi Mears, is married to the banjo player, Derrick Mears, and their daughter and son-in-law, Jade and Grant (who took his wife's name), add the guitar and percussion to the mix. They've diversified their portfolio; initially, every single member played ukelele, as they shared on the KUAF-FM, 89.1, show "Ozarks at Large." Since their early gigs at the likes of Springdale's Sassafras Winery, they've released an album, "One Street Town," and made their way around Northwest Arkansas farmers markets and breweries. They've got an easy "Prairie Home Companion"-ready sound, all strings and soft percussive brushes and harmonies. Check out "Watch It Burn," recorded at Red Barn Studios in Springdale, and if you like what you hear, catch them in this brewery/church basement hybrid of a venue. SS
10 p.m. Four Quarter Bar. $7.
This band, formed from the members of Fayetteville's Comfortable Brother, comes to the show in character and stays there, peeling out fake Bible verses and pastorly admonitions in between songs like kids who had been at church camp enough times to know what an altar call sounds like. They're good enough at it that you have to remind yourself that there's music involved and, as far as that goes, think: Ween's "A Tear for Eddie" with gobs of vocal harmony. A random drawing placed the quartet in the same round as champions Dazz & Brie in the 2017 Arkansas Times Musicians Showcase, and judge's comments included the following: "ELO vibes, kind of?! But like David Lynch at the same time" and "I just watched them play for half an hour and I don't know what genre they are." I don't want to speak out of turn here, but if you show up in a T-shirt that says "Praisin' and Blazin'," I think you've got a pretty good chance of being invited on stage. SS
- Joshua Asante
- #HERROYALDOPENESS: Jazz/soul singer Bijoux takes center stage at South on Main Saturday night.
9 p.m. South on Main. $15.
If, like me, you've seen Bijoux work her vocal magic mostly in the periphery — as the secret weapon to outsized musical personalities like Rodney Block or Big Piph — imagine what Her Royal Dopeness can do when she's front and center. The woman has stage charisma for days, and she emotes like the jazz greats did, and do; even when the words are all in French, you can't help but understand exactly what she's singing. She's joined at South on Main by bassist Corey Harris, drummer Jonathan Burks and Andre Franklin on keys. Also, she's hinted that some "Love Is a Battlefield" may be involved. SS
KUHS: SECOND BIRTHDAY PARTY
6:30 p.m. KUHS-LP, 97.9 FM, 236 Ouachita Ave., Hot Springs. $25.
You can count the number of solar-powered FM radio stations in the country on one hand, and one of them is sitting on Ouachita Avenue just off Bathhouse Row. KUHS-LP (low power) is turning 2 this year, and they say they've got "some big announcements to make about improving their signal to better serve the listeners of Hot Springs and streamers around the world." On top of that, Station Manager Zac Smith and his wife, Cheryl Roorda, have been laying the groundwork and renovating the historic building that houses KUHS for an adjacent microbrewery and pizzeria, SQZBX. They're showing off some of that progress at this anniversary event. "Jimmy Daddy" Davis inaugurates the SQZBX stage, and we hope that somewhere in the crowd there will be that guy who blessed last year's party with a magnificent top hat, its apex adorned with a meticulously sculpted replica of the station's radiating tower. SS
BASS PLAYERS BALL
7:30 p.m. Revolution. $15-$30.
Anyone who heard the svelte Duff McKagan alongside Axl and Slash Saturday evening at War Memorial Stadium will tell you: The bass player can make a pretty OK song into a riotous or revelatory one. As bass players go, the two headlining this early Sunday showcase are at the top of the game: Sharay Reed's been a Fender-toting staple of gospel jams across the world and part of rhythm sections for Aretha Franklin, Branford Marsalis, Patti LaBelle and Chaka Khan. Robert "Bubby" Lewis' style mixes slapping, Weather Report-style jazz musings and actual chords (why not? There are six strings on his custom "Haki" bass). For guitar nerds, check out the spacing between Lewis' strings, seemingly miles-wide even for the giant-handed among us. He's played in bands backing Lupe Fiasco and Snoop Dogg, and you can catch him at this show, which includes a cameo from Little Rock's own Joel "Jammin JC" Crutcher. SS
7 p.m. Riverdale 10 Cinema. $8.50.
First things first: This is not the 2006 Edward Norton/Jessica Biel, scored-by-Philip Glass film. That one's undoubtedly delightful, as Roger Ebert assures us with his 3.5 out of four stars, though he reserved top honors reserved for the other "The Illusionist," brought to us by Sylvain Chomet, the genius behind "The Triplets of Belleville." Evidently, the famous French actor, director and mime Jacques Tati had written the script as a love letter to his estranged daughter Helga Marie-Jeanne Schiel, intending to make it a live-action piece that would serve as a token of reconciliation. Tati's semi-autobiographical script remained unproduced, and Tati's youngest daughter, Sophie Tatischeff, passed the script to Chomet, noting that she didn't want to see an actor portray her father. Sophie died two years later and, under Chomet's direction, 80 animators brought the story to life and it premiered at the Berlinale International Film Festival in 2010, losing at that year's Oscars and, in the process, generally flying under the radar for American audiences (thanks, "Toy Story 3"). Luckily, Film Quotes Films and the Arkansas Times Film Series are here to make sure you get a chance to see the film in all its hand-drawn glory. SS