World Premiere of Arkansas Rock

Last September, I had the opportunity to visit the Rock ‘N’ Roll Highway 67 Museum in Newport, AR and to sit down with musician Sonny Burgess to discuss the early days of rockabilly. The nostalgia was almost overwhelming as we discussed Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison, the Silver Moon, barn dances, hot cars and red-headed women–the photographs of these people and places surrounded the walls of the room we were in. 
The intent of the interview was to create a two to three minute video podcast to promote Rock ‘N’ Roll Highway 67 but within minutes of the time the camera started rolling, I knew that this would be an even bigger project.  After I returned to Little Rock, I watched the interview over and over again and thought, this glimpse into history was too good to simply put on a shelf. However, I wasn’t sure what to do with it.
A couple of weeks later, Newport hosted the Depot Days Festival.  Several of the musicians Sonny and I discussed in our interview were scheduled to be at the festival.  We decided to set up cameras and film a round table discussion forum with the musicians to create another video.Kim Williams, Arkansas’s Delta Travel Writer, sat in on those interviews.
Out of these two events came an interesting video podcast series that the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism will unveil later this week at the Clinton Presidential Center.  Below is the media advisory for the event. 

In conjunction with the Clinton Center exhibits “Elvis” and “Elvis at 21, Photographs by Alfred Wertheimer,” the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism will premiere new video podcasts featuring Arkansas’s Rock ‘N’ Roll Highway 67.

A panel comprised of musicians Sonny Burgess, Kern Kennedy, Fred Douglas, Jim Aldridge, Bobby Crafford and Ace Cannon will share their personal experiences playing in the 1950s along Arkansas Highway 67 with rock legends like Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and others.

When:      Thursday, June 30, 2011
                 12 noon – 1 p.m.

Where:   Clinton Presidential Center
               Choctaw Building – Sturgis Hall

*Seating is limited. Reservations are required. Please RSVP to 501-748-0425 or by emailing

After June 30, the podcasts will be available on


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