Raven Records & Rarities has joined forces with WUTK on Saturday, June 16th to host a night full of music, movies and fun at the Relix Variety Theatre in Knoxville's thriving Happy Holler neighborhood.
The event's purpose is two-fold: on the surface it marks the grand opening of Raven Records & Rarities new location on 1200 N. Central after moving from Bearden, but also the event hopes to serve as a fundraiser for the student-operated UT radio station WUTK. This partnership between station and record store is not a new thing, but rather it dates back over three decades.
"We've been almost joined at the hip with Raven Records since 1985, when they opened a store on the Strip, and we've done a lot since they reopened in Bearden a year ago," said Benny Smith, WUTK's General Manager and Programming Director. "And now that they're moving, they called us... and it's blown up into something bigger than I think they first intended."
For both partners, this is a symbiotic relationship.
"We talked to WUTK about our move and asked them about doing some promotions," said store co-owner Jay Nations. "And they're doing their 30-year anniversary and they suggested that they should get involved with it."
The show begins at 5:15 p.m. on the Relix's big screen with the Tennessee Archive of Moving Image (TAMI) showing of the Director's Cut of the 1978 cult horror film "The Incoming Freshman" (a film directed, produced and filmed by UT students). From there the showings continue with highlights of the Knoxville classic show "The Cas Walker Farm and Home Hour Show" at 6:45 p.m.
From there at 8 p.m., the focus of the night turns towards the music, as four performances will hit the Relix stage, beginning with Jack Renfro and the Apocalypso Quartet, followed by The French, Eric Griffin and then ending with the group Guy Marshall. During set changes, Knoxville musician and filmmaker Rus Harper will be showing 1980's era performance footage from several Knoxville bands.
"Jack does a spoken work kind of thing with talented musicians behind him," Smith said. "After them is the French, which are more high energy and a rootsy-rock band made up of a lot of musicians from around town... They're almost like an all-star band. And then you've got Eric Griffin, who is just getting ready to release a solo EP and he's really talented. Griffin is also a member of the last band on, Guy Marshall, and we're playing a song by the right now on the station and the phones ring whenever we play it."
The music for the night hopes to reflect not only the diversity of the neighborhood, but also the commitment and support that both Raven Records and WUTK have had over the years to the local music and art scene.
"WUTK is a local college radio station supporting local bands and we have always had an interest in supporting local bands," Nations said.
Smith also reasserted Nations' view of the night's emphasis on local music.
"We say that 'we're local music's best friend,' and we don't say that just to fill up time on-air," Smith said. "We show it with events like this."
The evening caps off with the showing of a yet to be announced horror film at midnight.
All attendees from 5 to 8 p.m. must be over the age of 18 and any age after 8 p.m., admittance is five dollars, with all proceeds going to WUTK. Attendees who make donations and are wearing a 2012 Bonnaroo wristband will receive a free gift from WUTK.
"We want people to leave and think that was the best five dollars they have ever spent," Smith said.