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Kevin’s World

Big Muddy Folk Festival

The world is so noisy ... music has been wounded by Steve Jobs’ technology ... the main role of the artist is to serve the song, as opposed to him or herself.” — Musician and actor Wil Oldham There is something sincere, in this ironic…

Delta Thrash

Photo courtesy of mollygenemusic.com. March is Women’s Month here in the United States. This is funny because it is just one month out of 12 when not only does this noble gender outnumber their male counterparts, they also, judging by…

Body & Soul

Oscar Micheaux was an African-American filmmaker and entrepreneur, who produced and directed more than 40 films from 1919 to 1948. Micheaux's movies were known as "race" films — made by black filmmakers, with an all-black cast for black…

“Middle Grounds”

When I first arrived at MU in 1975, Columbia didn’t even have cable TV. But, the History Department offered “Epic America,” a pair of courses on Native American culture in a kind of primitive virtual classroom — just a black and…

Contra Dancing

November puts us smack in the middle of the fall contra dance season, as good a time as any to familiarize yourself with this timeless and invigorating communal activity. Contra dances are so called not, as I once thought, because of some…

Les Burgers d’Antan

There's been a lot of Burger Talk around the Inside Columbia offices these past few weeks. It's set me to thinking, "How many burgers have I eaten in my life?" and "Ubi sunt les burgers d'antan?"  People point to the Booches Burger as…

Kevin’s World Wrestling

The year was 2006 — and one signature event stands out: the Women’s Arm Wrestling Championship and Hot Dog Eating Contest on the Kevin’s World patio. But first, let me roll back the tape a few years. I’d spent 25 years helping to build a…

Back In The Day

Back in the day, the area around Wabash Station was an essential warehousing district for goods brought into this market by rail. The bulky supplies were stored in and beneath nearby buildings before being picked up and disseminated. Many…

Here Come The Mummies

Can both of these statements be true? Here Come the Mummies is an 8-piece funk-rock band of 5,000-year-old Egyptian mummies with a one-track mind. Nashville’s Here Come the Mummies is a fun-rock band composed of professional…

Here Come The Mummies

Can both of these statements be true? Here Come The Mummies is an eight-piece funk-rock band of 5,000-year-old Egyptian mummies with a one-track mind. Nashville’s Here Come The Mummies is a fun-rock band composed of professional…

This Academy Rocks

Before there was “Rock School” (the documentary) or “School of Rock” (the movie and musical) there was Hickman High School’s very own Academy of Rock. It was just about 15 years ago that Hickman students approached their teacher, Phil…

The Music Maker

Ironically, the biggest loss to the local music scene in 2015 wasn’t a local at all. Producer/bandleader Lou Whitney died at home in Springfield in October. Recording at Whitney’s Column One Studio had been a rite of passage for Boone…

The August Assortment

Bust out of your ordinary arts routine this month and try something new, like a music festival over in Hartsburg, a retro concert at the state fair, and some Audubon engravings that will have you walking on the wild side.…

Composers Competition

The sixth annual Mizzou International Composers Festival takes place this month on the University of Missouri campus. This year’s lineup continues an impressive run for the series, which features both guest composers and the amazing talent…

Black History Lessons

Race & Meaning. Shortly after the Ferguson grand jury ruling came down in late 2014, local black community factotum Bill Thompson gave a talk at Ragtag Cinema on what it means to be black in Missouri. Thompson explained that…

See You In The Funny Pages

Most people think Mizzou’s relationship with comics begins and ends with Mort Walker’s Beetle Bailey strip. Walker attended the University of Missouri after serving in the armed forces and developed the Beetle Bailey character originally…

The Chicago Way

Chicago has long been the American big city with a heart of soul. It boasts a legendary gospel scene that spawned Curtis Mayfield and the Staple Singers. It’s also the home of Chess Records, a still-active free jazz scene that stretches…

Rockin’ With Rodriguez

Not long ago, I was backstage at a show discussing strategies for a successful music career with the stage crew and opening band. The crucial approach, we agreed, is: always have your bag packed, always be ready. Other observations and…

Dancing With The Devils

In the 1930s, the country music industry in Springfield, Mo., was amorphous, yet very broadcast-centric. The area was home to powerful 50,000-watt radio stations that broadcast nationally to avid — and often metropolitan — audiences.…