Arts & Letters

Arts & Letters is a special program hosted by associate professor Brad Minnick of the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. It highlights the arts, humanities, and social sciences. The program's theme music was composed by The Damsels in Distress.

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A&L Short: Kevin And Gus Kerby

Sep 12, 2016
Kevin and Gus Kerby
Mary Ellen Kubit

 

    

This back-to-school season, we highlight a father and son musical team from central Arkansas who spent a large part of their summer playing, practicing and laughing together.

Kevin and Gus Kerby sat down in the KUAR studios with J. Bradley Minnick of Arts and Letters. They talked about how playing music together has fostered a good sense of humor and strengthened their relationship.

A&L Short: Guitar Dave

Aug 23, 2016

Music can provide the life to a dull party or maybe to calm a rambunctious toddler. On the streets of downtown Little Rock, musician Guitar Dave Fredieu found a lifesaving cure in his music: It’s helped him cope with homelessness and addiction. He was recently in KUAR’s studios recording and spoke with J. Bradley Minnick about his life and his music.

If you want to hear more of Guitar Dave's music, you can find him busking regularly at the Farmer's Market Downtown.

 

We Have Taken & Eaten

Jun 23, 2016

 

On this episode of Arts & Letters, we talk with percussionist Kevin Sims, composer Scott Wollschleger and poet Abby Minor about their experimental monodrama, “We Have Taken & Eaten.” The piece is performed with an array of traditional percussion and non-traditional instruments, including cassette tape players, temple bowls and light bulbs.

Down Home Soul

May 12, 2016
beaconpress.org

On this episode of Arts & Letters, we talk with Hot Springs, Arkansas native Rashod Ollison. His memoir, Soul Serenade: Rhythm, Blues, & Coming of Age Through Vinyl, was published by Beacon Press in 2016.

Growing up in Hot Springs and Little Rock in the 1980’s and 1990’s, Rashod Ollison experienced a world of “cold love, redolent of vinegar, without the slightest hint of sweetness.”

And the only thing that helped him endure was music.

The Threshold of Structure

Apr 7, 2016

On this episode of Arts & Letters, we talk with poet Terry Wright, whose book Graphs published by Kairos Editions in 2008 and chapbook Fractal Cut-Ups from Kattywompus  Press in 2011 demonstrate the organic heuristics of mashing up data and Internet search strings to produce prose poetry.

Mourner's Bench

Feb 26, 2016

On this episode of Arts & Letters, we talk with Arkansas Delta novelist and Ph.D student Sanderia Faye, whose novel Mourner's Bench published by The University of Arkansas Press in 2015, recounts the experiences of Sarah Jones from the summer of 1964 to the fall of 1965. Sarah is an eight year old who has to “navigate the growing tensions of the fictional small town of Maeby, Arkansas.”

Pop Up In The Rock

Jan 27, 2016
Mary Ellen Kubit

Each year, "Pop Up in the Rock” focuses on a neglected block in Little Rock and illustrates what is possible when community volunteers reclaim the block.

Sundays With TJ

Nov 20, 2015

On this episode of Arts & Letters, we talk with Janis F. Kearney about her memoir Sundays With TJ: 100 Years of Memories on Varner Road--a journey with her 107 year old father, born in 1906, just 40 years after slavery in the town of Lake Village, Arkansas.  

“I chose this role some 50 years ago on Varner Road. Thomas "TJ" Kearney was the storyteller and I, the rememberer of his words, even his unspoken meanings,” writes Kearney.

A Few Seconds Of Radiant Filmstrip

Oct 1, 2015

On this episode of Arts & Letters, we talk with Little Rock novelist, short story writer, prodigious list maker, and former 7th grader Kevin Brockmeier. He is the author of several national bestselling books of fiction including, A Brief History of the Dead, The View from the Seventh Layer, and The Illumination

His latest effort recounts a character named Kevin Brockmeier and his present tense misadventures throughout his 7th grade year growing up in Little Rock. 

Return of the Gar

Jul 30, 2015
alligator gar
Chris Hickey

On this episode of Arts & Letters, we talk with writer, fisherman, ecologist and University of Central Arkansas professor Mark Spitzer.  His new book, Return of the Gar, published by the University of North Texas Press (as part of its Southwestern Writing Series) is a sequel of-sorts to his first book Season of The Gar: Adventures in Pursuit of America's Misunderstood Fish, published by the University of Arkansas Press—the first accessible book-length study of the gar in the English language.

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