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Friday, April 15, 2005

Little Rock--The Old State House Museum is proud to announce a concert featuring five country music singers/songwriters with Arkansas roots: Shawn Camp, Steve Dean, Donny Lowery, Wood Newton, and Mark Alan Springer. The concert will be held at the Old State House Museum in downtown Little Rock on Thursday, May 18, at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are $15 each and can be purchased through the museum. Call 501-324-9685 for information.

Since 1980, Donny has had more than 75 songs recorded by country music artists including: Joe Nichols, Reba McEntire, Alabama, Diamond Rio, Restless Heart, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Nanci Griffith, Billy Ray Cyrus, Mac McAnally, Exile, New Grass Revival, Ozark Mountain Daredevils, Highway 101, The Kendalls, Mel Tillis, Charlie Pride, Johnny Paycheck, Hank Williams, Jr., John Waite, Kathy Mattea, Tanya Tucker, Nicolette Larson, Lorrie Morgan, Glenn Campbell, Twister Alley, Tim Ryan, and others.

Donny’s first single, “Old Flame” (Alabama), co-written with Mac McAnally has been included on six of Alabama’s albums. Three other Donny Lowery songs have also topped the country charts. These include: “Stand A Little Rain” (Nitty Gritty Dirt Band), “Why Does It Have To Be (Wrong or Right)”, (Restless Heart), and “Say What’s In Your Heart” (Restless Heart).

Donny’s most recent release is a song entitled “Just A Little More”, co-written with Joe Nichols and included on Joe’s new album, III, which recently went gold.

Wood was born and raised in Hampton, Arkansas. He moved to Nashville in 1976 to get into the music business. Wood wrote: "Bobbie Sue" (The Oak Ridge Boys), "Twenty Years Ago" (Kenny Rogers), “What I Didn’t Do” (Steve Wariner), and his most recent “Riding with Private Malone” (David Ball). These songs are also included on his latest CD release, “My Roots Are In These Trees”.

In spring 2005, he produced and sang harmony on the song “Old Folks at Home” for David Ball. His “Beautiful Dreamer: The Songs Of Stephen Foster” won the Grammy for Traditional Folk Album of the Year.

Currently Wood is co-writing and producing an album project on Jett Williams, daughter of the legendary Hank Williams Sr.

Mark Alan Springer grew up in the small Arkansas farming community of Weiner. Many of his songs refer to his agricultural roots including “Where Corn Don’t Grow” recorded by Travis Tritt. Other Springer hits are “Two Sparrows in a Hurricane” (Tanya Tucker); “One Boy, One Girls” (Collin Raye); “That’s Why I’m Here”, “All I Need to Know” and “Grandpa Told Me So” (all recorded by Kenny Chesney). He is also currently involved in publishing and some of his publishing credits include: “Single White Female” (Chely Wright); “Love Ain’t Like That” (Faith Hill); “There is No Arizonia” (Jamie O’Neal) and “Me Till Monday” (Steve Azar).

Steve Dean was raised in Little Rock on a steady diet of Beatles, Byrds and Eagles with early influences of Buck Owens, Roger Miller and Jimmy Dean added for flavor. He wrote songs and performed in many bands during these years.

Steve moved to Nashville in 1980, to pursue a lifelong dream of writing songs. His first single, “Don’t Your Mem’ry Ever Sleep at Night”, was recorded by Steve Wariner in 1983. Other hits include “Fast Lanes and Country Roads” for Barbara Mandrell, “Just Enough Rope” for Rick Trevino, “One Bridge I Didn’t Burn” for Conway Twitty, “The More I Learn” for Ronna Reeves, and “Cool to Be A Fool” for Joe Nichols. He has also co-written five number one hits: “Round About Way” (George Strait), “Walk On” (Reba McEntire, “Southern Star (Alabama), “It Takes a Little Rain” (The Oak Ridge Boys), and “Hearts Aren’t Made to Break” (Lee Greenwood).

Other artists who have cut Dean’s songs include Danny Tate, Craig Morgan, John Michael Montgomery, Ty Herndon, Lee Ann Womack, Waylon Jennings, Pure Prairie League, Meal McCoy, Ricochet, Ronnie Milsap, and Billy Dean.

Shawn Camp spent his early childhood on a small farm outside of Perryville, Arkansas. The family moved frequently top follow his dad’s job as an ironworker. Camp started playing guitar at age 5 and is a gifted musician, playing the fiddle, guitar and mandolin. He moved to Nashville in 1987, working as a fiddle player and band member for acts like the Osborne Brothers, Alan Jackson, Suzy Boggus, Shelby Lynne, and Trisha yearwood. Camp struck out on his own in the early 1990s and landed a deal with Warner Brothers/Reprise Records. Camp co-wrote “Two Pine Coladas” (Garth Brooks); “How Long Gone” (Brooks and Dunn); Fallin’ Never Felt So Good (Mark Chestnut); and “My Poor Old Heart” (Kenny Chesney).

This upcoming concert celebrates the Old State House Museum’s exhibit, Send You Back to Arkansas: Our Own Sweet Sounds II, which pays tribute to Arkansas music and musicians. The exhibit is on view at the museum through April 30, 2005. Admission to the Old State House is free.

The Old State House Museum is a museum of the Department of Arkansas Heritage and shares the goal of all seven Department of Arkansas Heritage agencies, that of preserving and enhancing the heritage of the state of Arkansas. The agencies are Arkansas Arts Council, Arkansas Historic Preservation Program, Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission, Delta Cultural Center in Helena, Historic Arkansas Museum, the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center, and the Old State House Museum.

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