The long farewell of Randall Shreve and the Sideshow

October 31st, 2014 at 1:21 pm

Randall Shreve at a previous masquerade ball. Photo by VICTOR CHALFANT.

Randall Shreve at a previous masquerade ball. Photo by VICTOR CHALFANT.

Halloween has always been near and dear to the hearts of the members of Randall Shreve and the Sideshow.

It’s an opportunity to dress up and be silly — something the Fayetteville-based rock band has always been good at, even away from this time of year.

So Halloween provides an chance to go even more extreme, something the band is happy to attempt. Added to the group’s annual Halloweentime masquerade balls are contortionists, circus acts and more. All, of course, while the band provides a soundtrack.

Sadly, tonight (Oct. 31)’s event at George’s Majestic Lounge is the final masquerade. The group has announced they will cease to be after the end of the year, putting an end to many years of touring, recording and performing.

Frontman Randall Shreve chatted with me recently about his band’s amicable end and the wildness that will be tonight’s masquerade ball.

Read my story in today’s What’s Up! section [Note: Subscriber content] to learn more.

Admission to tonight’s show, which also includes a Beatles cover set from The Airplanes, is $10. The show begins at 9 p.m.

A party two decades running

October 31st, 2014 at 11:41 am

Ultra Suede

Ultra Suede

Early in the band’s career, when the lines to see Ultra Suede were out the door and 1,500 people would flow through in an evening, vocalist Chaddie Platt says the other bands were always jealous. They would piss off all the acts who performed originals.

There actually were a few Ultra Suede original songs, including one about cow tipping. But none of those songs got the crowd moving as much as covers of “Love Shack” and “I Will Survive.” So the band stuck with what worked, and 20 years later, they’re still using the same formula.

Ultra Suede played its first gig on Oct. 31, 1994. That makes the band’s show tonight (Oct. 31) a 20th anniversary event. The band will bring back some long-forgotten songs and will also invite back former band members for the special performance.

Members Rhonda Dillard and Chaddie Platt both chatted with me about the band’s past, present and future. You can read my story in today’s What’s Up! section [Note: Subscriber content].

The band’s set takes place from 6-8 p.m. at George’s Majestic Lounge. Admission is $5.

The weekend in music, with Mimosa and more

October 31st, 2014 at 5:03 am

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Here’s MiMosa doing “Up in the Clouds.” You can see him on ground level on Sunday at George’s.

As a Midwest kid, it took me a while to learn about brunch. I’m no expert — far from it. But I’ve learned mimosas are for the weekends, which is indeed the musical recommendation for this weekend.

MiMosa — in this case, not a mix of orange juice and sparkling wine — brings his live show to George’s Majestic Lounge on Sunday (Nov. 2). He’s made a name for himself in the electronica world, and his latest album, “Future Trill Vol. 2″ can be found on his website. Admission to the 9 p.m. show is $15.

George’s has quite the full lineup this weekend, actually. Tonight (Oct. 31), Ultra Suede is featured during happy hour from 6-8 p.m. and Randall Shreve and the Sideshow take over headlining duties for the late-night show. Details on both of those events follow.

And on Saturday (Nov. 1), Isayah’s Allstars will perform a Neil Young tribute show at George’s. That should be fun.

Elsewhere, of course, there are all of the Halloween events, which we compiled earlier this week. Or, you can go see someone like ’80s country act Diamond Rio, who are booked for a Saturday night show at the Van Buren Fine Arts Center. They had a lot of hits in the late 1980s and early 1990s, including “Meet in the Middle.” Admission to that one is $20-$35.

What’s on your agenda for the weekend?

Dress in costume, see some music

October 29th, 2014 at 12:41 pm

Randall Shreve and the Sideshow at a previous Masquerade Ball. They'll repeat the process Friday at George's. Photo by VICTOR CHALFANT.

Randall Shreve and the Sideshow at a previous Masquerade Ball. They’ll repeat the process Friday at George’s. Photo by VICTOR CHALFANT.

Maybe it’s because I refuse to grow up, but I swear Halloween just keeps getting more fun as I get older.

I remember just a few of my childhood costumes. I remember all of my latter-day costumes. Perhaps that gap is a symbol of losing my memory due to advancing age, but I’d like to think it is because Halloween continues to be fun. There are plenty of events happening in the area this weekend, and my colleague Allison Carter does a good job of wrapping up many of them. [Note: Subscriber content]

One of the reasons this is a fun holiday is because many of our local bars and clubs host live music events for the occasion. Below are the music-related events I know of. If you’ve got an addition, add it as a comment or email me the details.

Also, boo!

Randall Shreve’s Masquerade Party, 9 p.m. Oct. 31 at George’s Majestic LoungeRandall Shreve and company will include many circus-like elements into their set. Also, The Airplanes will perform many Beatles songs.

Ultra Suede, 6-8 p.m. Oct. 31 at George’s Majestic Lounge — The party rock band Ultra Suede celebrates 20 years with guest acts and long-retired songs.

Shawn James and the Shapeshifters, 10 p.m. Oct. 31 at Smoke & Barrel Tavern — I’m not sure if Shawn James and his band will wear costumes, but there’s a costume contest at midnight for everyone in attendance.

The Good Fear’s Six Tom Pettys show, 10 p.m. Nov. 1 at Smoke & Barrel — I do know the members of The Good Fear will all dress up. The six members will dress up as Tom Petty, and all of their songs will be Tom Petty covers. Witchsister — who have a very seasonally appropriate name — joins them.

A final recap of Yonder’s Harvest Festival

October 28th, 2014 at 10:47 am

A panoramic image of the Harvest Festival main stage area by KATIE TERRELL.

A panoramic image of the Harvest Festival main stage area by KATIE TERRELL.

I know I’ve dedicated a lot of ink (actual ink and the digital variety) to the recently concluded Yonder Mountain String Band’s Harvest Music Festival.

This is likely to be the last one until early June, when the lineup for the 2015 edition of the festival is revealed.

For our What’s Up! print edition, I dedicated my semi-regular Listen Here! column to the good times and great weather experienced on Mulberry Mountain in 2014.

Read my column from Friday’s What’s Up! section [Note: Subscriber content] or check out my previous posts, including a few photo slideshows.

I can’t wait until next year.

Soon in tunes: Drive-By Truckers, Oct. 28 at George’s

October 27th, 2014 at 10:51 am

Drive-By Truckers

Drive-By Truckers

Southern rockers Drive-By Truckers will motor through the area for a Tuesday night (Oct. 28) show at George’s Majestic Lounge. The Athens, Ga., act is touring behind its newest album, “English Oceans,” which was released in March 2014. Houndmouth will open the show, which begins at 9 p.m. Tickets are $25 and are available through

Soon in tunes: Bret Michaels, Oct. 24 at Fort Smith Convention Center

October 24th, 2014 at 12:17 pm

Bret Michaels

Bret Michaels

Television personality and ’80s rocker Bret Michaels will return to the area for a concert tonight (Oct. 24) in Fort Smith. The Poison frontman and solo artist will bring his current tour to the Fort Smith Convention Center for an 8 p.m. show. Admission ranges from $35 to $50, and tickets are available via

The weekend in live music, with Mark Stuart and more

October 24th, 2014 at 5:03 am

Mark Stuart photo by Carlton Freeman

Mark Stuart photo by Carlton Freeman

When you come back from Harvest Festival, and it takes you a couple days to get caught back up on the reality of office life, and then you sneak away for a day for some other event, the weekend comes around crazy quick.

I’m struggling to believe today is Friday, but my calendar indicates it is Oct. 24 and therefore a Friday. I’m going to go with that.

Which means its time to plot out of the course of the weekend, music wise. Which is why we’re both here, right?

So let’s run through the options, shall we?

A recent tour has found Mark Stuart doing what he originally set out to do — play around the country as a singer-songwriter. He’s been playing professionally since the age of 15, but welcomed distractions such as touring with Freddy Fender, Steve Earle and Joan Baez as a hired gun of a guitarist. He’s now on a solo tour that will bring him to the Fayetteville Underground tonight. Admission to the 7:30 p.m. show is $15.

Elsewhere the weekend — arriving nearly in time for Halloween — is a band comprised of the undead. Here Come the Mummies, a funk and soul act who perform dressed as mummies, perform Saturday (Oct. 25) at George’s Majestic Lounge. It should be a rowdy time.

Also this weekend, one-man band AJ Gaither takes over the Pied Piper in Eureka Springs. That show takes place on Saturday as well.

What’s on your weekend agenda?

The strange and beautiful from Yonder’s Harvest Fest 2014

October 21st, 2014 at 12:37 pm

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Harvest 2014 Sights – Images by NWA Media

All photos by KEVIN KINDER, NWA Media.

A record crowd came to the 2014 edition of Yonder Mountain String Band’s Harvest Music Festival. The event, which ran from Oct. 16-18, featured hundreds of performances and just as many weird and wonderful scenes.

I tried to capture as much of it as I could, from the helicopter that buzzed the campgrounds all day Saturday (Oct. 18) to the proposal that took place during the beginning of Andy Frasco‘s set on Friday (Oct. 17) afternoon.

Look through the slideshow. You might even find yourself captured there.

Photos of bands at Yonder’s Harvest Festival 2014

October 21st, 2014 at 9:21 am

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Harvest 2014 Bands – Images by NWA Media

As often happens, the amount of photos a photographer takes during an event — for me at Yonder Mountain String Band’s Harvest Music Festival, in excess of 1,000 — does not equal the amount of available space.

The photos you see above are images of bands that didn’t find their way into my posts or print.

Come back later this afternoon when I share photos of festival attendees and all the other interesting sights captured at Harvest Fest, which ran from Oct. 16-18 at Mulberry Mountain in rural Franklin County.