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Stories by Jocelyn Murphy

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Three Cheers

AMP raises glass to three years of festival fun

Subscriber onlyFor the third year of the Walmart Arkansas Music Pavilion's music, beer and technology festival, just a few minor tweaks have been made. Because if it's not broken, don't fix it. Continue reading...

Praying For Laughs - “Sister” returns with the gift of comedy

Subscriber onlySpit out your gum, turn off your cell phone and end that conversation with your neighbor before the lights go down, because actor and comedian Nonie Newton-Riley is living out every performer's dream: calling people out who disturb her show. As the "sister" teaching the "class" in the play "Late Nite Catechism," Newton-Riley welcomes the opportunity to scold members of the audience -- and the audience tends to welcome it, too. Continue reading...

Music Of The World

Singer shares stories of people, places

Subscriber onlyDaniel Champagne has had a guitar in his hands since he was 5 years old. Following in his guitar-playing father's footsteps, Champagne says this tender age is when he started trying to become a songwriter. Just over two decades later, the young performer's virtuosity is turning heads all over the world as he continues racking up more miles than most people will travel in their whole lives. Continue reading...

The Sound of Hope

Musician spreads wings and message with new project

Subscriber only"No matter what you're going through, I wanted people to just have a song they could listen to and feel like they can keep going and keep moving and just not give up hope on themselves." Continue reading...

Modern Classics

Rockers still offer surprises after four decades

Subscriber onlySteve "Luke" Lukather will tell you, unpretentiously, how hard he and his band Toto have worked the past 41 years. In fact, the founding member, manager and guitarist will tell you anything you could want to know about the band and the history they've witnessed -- without much prompting -- and you can just sit back and listen. Continue reading...

Where The Art Glows

Stroll celebrates neon works

Subscriber onlyThere's just something about neon. Singers are enamored with it; lonely hearts are comforted sipping a beer beneath its glow; it guides the excited and the weary alike as they roam their cities after dark. Continue reading...

When The Music Moves You - Celebrated musician brings New Orleans to Arkansas

Subscriber onlyWhen guitar player Ted Ludwig was forced to leave his New Orleans home in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, he and his family ended up settling in Central Arkansas -- first out of necessity, but then out of affection for the place. Though the hurricane's aftermath was of course devastating, Ludwig says the move was like a reset for his music and allowed him to step into a more central role. Continue reading...

Budding Artistry - Crystal Bridges’ grounds always ready for a closeup

Subscriber onlyMost everyone familiar with the museum knows how important complimenting, reflecting and celebrating nature is at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville. The building itself was designed with these ideals in mind and is surrounded by a 120-acre park comprising areas with unique characteristics, more than 3.5 miles of trails and outdoor artworks and installations. Have you ever considered, though, the effort that goes into making the flora and fauna of the grounds another engagement opportunity for visitors? Continue reading...

LIVE! in NWA

Subscriber onlyAug. 5: CongaKeyz Jazz Duo -- 11 a.m., Bella Vista Farmers Market. Continue reading...

Variety Is The Spice - WAC season aims to provide entry point for all

Subscriber onlyIn this, the Walton Arts Center's 26th year, Fayetteville's performing arts center continues its mission of providing diverse programming that will engage, enrich and enchant Northwest Arkansas audiences. Continue reading...

Cash, Cabs, Comedy - Ben Bailey steps out from behind the wheel

Subscriber onlyBen Bailey says his voice and the back of his head get recognized more than his face. Though the comedian has been doing stand-up for 25 years, he's now best known as the host of Discovery Channel's game show "Cash Cab." The show -- on which New York City taxi hailers unknowingly hop in Bailey's cab and have the chance to win money by answering trivia questions -- was revived in December after a hiatus with a batch of six episodes. Following that success, it returned last week with a new season. Continue reading...

Cohesive, Comfortable

Taking Back Sunday is living the dream

Subscriber onlyIt's like apples and peanut butter, Shaun Cooper says. "It" being the co-headlining tour where Cooper's band Taking Back Sunday joins progressive/alternative rockers Coheed and Cambria crossing the U.S. for the first time in their some 16 years of friendship. Continue reading...

Sweet Freedom - The Wilderness approaches new music one song at a time

Subscriber onlyThough they've only been making music as a group since 2015, Ontario rockers The Wilderness recognize the changing landscape that is the music industry and are shifting their focus from full, cohesive albums to individual singles they can produce as the inspiration strikes. Continue reading...

A Good Cause To Rock -- Peacemaker Festival appeals to performers, audiences in Fort Smith

Subscriber onlyIn its fourth year, the nonprofit Peacemaker Festival in Fort Smith will continue its mission of bringing diverse musical acts to downtown Fort Smith and supporting local charities, while actually scaling down the size of its lineup. Continue reading...

Culinary History -- Speaker shares important stories through food

Subscriber onlyHow do you begin to tell the history of a people within a medium where they have been ignored, discarded and sometimes even actively erased? Culinary journalist and author Toni Tipton-Martin begins, in her lectures, with an exercise in implicit bias. Continue reading...