KASU Arkansas Roots Concert — from the Ozarks to the Delta

KASU presents 10 Arkansas Musicians in Riceland Hall Concert

            KASU, the on-air and online public media service of Arkansas State University, presents 10 outstanding Arkansas musicians in an Arkansas Roots Concert: From the Ozarks to the Delta, June 20 at 7 p.m. in Riceland Hall at the Fowler Center on the A-State Campus.

        KASU station manager Mike Doyle described the concert as “another major outgrowth from the KASU Arkansas Roots initiative that presents Arkansas talent on the air and in live performance.  In 2014, we featured the Lockhouse Orchestra in a tribute to the late Arkansas legend Levon Helm. In 2015, we’re presenting an entertaining evening of Americana and acoustic music, blues, country, a hint of rock-and-roll, a bit of bluegrass and a touch of gospel – performed by some world class musicians who will make you proud that you live near these people.”

            Five-time Arkansas and two-time national fiddling champion Tim Crouch of Strawberry has appeared on thousands of recordings, including those of nationally known superstar performers. A former staff fiddle player for Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry, Crouch has also performed on numerous television programs including Late Night with David Letterman, the Conan  O’Brien Show, Austin City Limits and Hee Haw. Crouch will appear with five other musicians from the Ozarks in the first portion of the KASU event.

            Pam Setser is an Arkansas native who has been performing since the age of five when she appeared with her parents in the Simmons Family Band.  She spent three years as the featured lead female singer of The Country Music Story, a stage show in Hot Springs.  Setser also received the second runner-up award in the national finals of the Wrangler Country Showdown talent competition.  She has appeared on the Louisiana Hayride radio program as well as the television shows You Can Be A Star, Nashville Now, Hee Haw and the Tonight Show.

            Brad Apple from Independence County sings and plays mandolin, guitar and bass. The third-generation musician, who has appeared on the worldwide broadcast of the WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour, works extensively as a recording engineer for other musicians in his own studio and for Raney Recording Studio in Drasco, Arkansas.

            Gary Rounds is a gifted vocalist from the Batesville area who is known for his very expressive and smooth singing style.  A past performer on the syndicated radio program At Home In The Country, he has recorded a CD of music with his friend Tim Crouch that ranges from folk songs to bluegrass to classic country hits.

            Sam and Nathan Cobb round out the Ozark Musicians portion of the KASU event, performing on a variety of instruments. With their brother Caleb, the multi-talented Cobb Brothers have performed at the Ozark Folk Center, Cash’s White River Hoedown, Mickey Gilley’s Theatre, Silver Dollar City, and many bluegrass festivals in Arkansas and the surrounding areas.

            Three Jonesboro blues-rock-and-roots artists  -- known as The Arkansas Brothers -- will join another veteran Arkansas bluesman in the concert’s second portion. The Arkansas Brothers trio includes real brothers Jess and Tim Hoggard and their longtime associate Matt Pierce. Joining the Arkansas Brothers as special guest   will be Charles Woods of Little Rock who possesses masterful guitar skills and smooth mature vocals. Woods has played with such notable acts as the Staple Singers, Rufus Thomas, Little Johnny Taylor, Fenton Robinson, Larry Davis, and on bass guitar with Albert King.

            Jess Hoggard’s musical resumé includes a stint as rhythm and lead guitarist with Mark  Sallings and the Famous Unknowns, the first house band to play at B.B. King’s nightspot in Memphis. Jess played with the Muddy Waters Rhythm Section and the Jelly Roll All Stars – bands that included legendary musicians “Fuzz” Jones, Sam Carr and Willie “Big Eye” Smith.

            Jess’s brother Tim Hoggard, who carved out his own niche on the blues harmonica, has recorded with his brother in Clarksville, Mississippi and played at blues festivals in Chicago and Peoria, Illinois.

Guitarist Matt Pierce recorded and toured with Mississippi roots/blues icon Jimbo Mathus and the Tri-State Coalition. Most recently, he has played in the band of country roots singer-songwriter Jesse Charles Hammock and with Sky City, the neo-honky tonk band from Jonesboro. Like the Hoggard Brothers, Pierce has decades of experience playing club dates with various bands.

            Tickets for the KASU Arkansas Roots Concert in Riceland Hall  can be purchased in person at the ASU Central Box Office, online at http://www.astate.edu/tickets/or by calling 870-972-2781. All tickets are general admission: $20 adults, $15 seniors, ASU faculty, and staff, and $6 students plus any applicable fees. The Riceland Hall box office will open at 6 pm on the evening of the June 20 concert.