I really wanted to do someone other than the Gossip for week 4 of LNMC's alphabetical state-by-state survey of up-and-coming acts across the big fifty. Why? Because when you already have the ear of Rick Rubin and every rock journo in America and England, you're hardly up-and-coming. And it's really only singer Beth Ditto that's from Arkansas. Had my surveys of the local Arkansas talent bring forth anything other than Evanescence and The Good Fight, a twentysomething emo band with a Republican State Senator in their ranks (the rest of the band disagree with his politics and make him play an anti-war song,) maybe we'd have someone else.
Caveats aside, the electrifying Ditto is probably the most relevant musician to come out of Arkansas since Bill Clinton, and the Gossip truly deserve all their success and acclaim for their XRaySpex-meets-the-Supremes ball of unending gusto.
I expect some Johnny Cash and Black Oak Arkansas in the comments. Any Arkansan (nomenclature?) with a guitar has big shoes to fill.