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Barry Courter

Stories by Barry

Keith Sherman was a fixture on the local music scene for decades. His deep, beautiful vocals were matched by his talent for telling a story with passion and believability.

Over the last 20 years, the Barking Legs Theater has earned a reputation as a great place to perform. It's also known as an intimate place to see a favorite act. But it does have its quirks, like having to go outside to get to a bathroom during a show.

BARRY COURTER: Lisa, first, happy Memorial Day, and I hope you are enjoying your day off. I don’t know what you planned to do this week, but there is a mustache, I mean a band, playing at JJ’s Bohemia on Wednesday that is worth checking out.

For centuries, wood was the go-to material when it came to windows.

Q: Dad, where is a good place to get advice or to learn how to do something?

The 2014 Riverfront Nights schedule will feature some funk/metal, rock, a little country and an iconic ’80s band.

When you see or hear the name Metallica, you kind of know it's a metal band. Just as you know before hearing the first note that New Kids on the Block is going to be a contrived pop band.

Warehouse Row and the city are getting a new restaurant. Nashville-based Two Ten Jacks, an izakaya and ramen house, will open its second location there in the basement food-court area.

What's the deal with Jerry Seinfeld coming back to Chattanooga to perform?

Poe's Tavern, originally built in what would be called Poe's Crossing (eventually Daisy and later Soddy-Daisy), has been an important landmark in the area for almost 200 years.

LISA DENTON: Barry, we need to mosey down to Nightfall on Friday. And I say "mosey" for a reason.

It is a commonly held belief that the best way to sell a home, especially an unoccupied one, is to stage it with furniture to give potential buyers an idea of what it could look like.

JAY: Barry, with all the hubbub this week about Tommy John surgeries and then a high school kid throwing 194 pitches in a 14-inning appearance, let's talk about pitching arms.

After 19 years as a single-day event, the Southern Brewer's Festival at Ross's Landing is adding a second day with more beer and more music.

Q: Dad, it looks I will be traveling for the company I work for. Any tips?

The light and glow that emanates from the faces of the three teen artists is almost as bright as the colors in the shapes and figures on the 300-square-foot mural they helped create.

Did you ever wonder why Riverbend doesn't book Paul McCartney? Or Arcade Fire?

A co-worker has been singing the praises of the Fresh Pot Cafe on Highway 153 in Hixson for several weeks. “Great food and a lot of it,” he’s repeated many times.

In the old days -- a decade or so ago -- filmmakers like Jeff Corwin would have to haul a million dollars worth of equipment to some remote place and then spend months, even years, in post-production to get a finished film.

BARRY COURTER: First, I hear there will be a new Granny Denton in the Soddy-Daisy area. Congratulations. The original was just that, I understand. Quite a character.

Making art has been a very personal, and often private, endeavor for all the artists who will showcase their work for a couple of days this month inside an old denim warehouse on Williams Street.

JAY: Did you see Kevin Durant's MVP speech earlier this week? It was real and touching and emotional. It should be required viewing for everyone who knows the difference between a basketball and basket-weaving.

Q: Dad, what's a good way to be noticed in a positive way at work?

Grammy nominee Bobby Rush will headline this year's Bessie Smith Strut, according to an announcement officials at the Bessie Smith Cultural Center, which is again teaming with Friends of the Festival to produce the event.

The competition is over, and the six local DJs who will entertain dancers during Riverbend's inaugural Silent Disco the first three nights of the festival have been selected.

BARRY: In our family, the name Pisa Pizza is spoken with the same reverence usually reserved for lost loved ones.

For 30 years or so, Priscilla was addicted to drugs.

BARRY COURTER: Lisa, happy Cinco de Mayo. Always happy to celebrate a reason to drink a beer.

JAY: Barry, we've been openly discussing issues about youth sports for a few weeks now, and we've even received a few questions.

Q: What's on your mind?

Local author Nancy Henderson likes to make people cry — or to at least feel a strong sense of empathy for her subject matter.

Few minor-league ball parks in the country have as much history as Engel Stadium, so it seems only fitting that the venerable venue would play host to the world's oldest band.

As I looked for a place to park around 1:30 Sunday afternoon near The Chattanoogan, where the Chocolate Fling was set to take place, I couldn't find a spot. I was early for the fling, so the streets weren't full of cars for that yet. The crowd, and the reason for my circling the block several times, was a couple of blocks away at Chattanooga Market at First Tennessee Pavilion.

LISA DENTON: You know, Barry, I have a hard time believing that Gillian Welch is a native New Yorker. She definitely has the look and sound of someone who was born and bred in Appalachia.

For the first couple of years after opening the Chattanooga Market in early April 2002, then-owner-founder Nick Jessen had nightmares in which no one showed up.

You probably don’t need to be reminded that we just now are coming out a very cold winter and a wet, cool spring.

Riverbend officials have announced the remaining lineup for this year’s festival, a list that includes Corey Smith, the Family Stone, the WannaBeatles, Arpetrio, the Weeks, Cody McCarver and nearly two dozen other acts.

Q: Dad, should I listen to my bosses or my professors when it comes to what I should be learning for the future?

Over the past several decades, fans at Historic Engel Stadium have seen the likes of no less than Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jackie Robinson and even basketball legend turned part-time baseball player Michael Jordan. Tonight and Saturday, April 24 and 26, they will get to cheer on Mighty Casey himself.

At first blush, the idea of presenting an opera inside Historic Engel Stadium might seem strange. But the folks with Artisti Affamati are producing "The Mighty Casey," which is based on the Ernest Thayer poem "Casey at the Bat," which has the memorable final line "But there is no joy in Mudville -- mighty Casey has struck out."

When Erskine Peoples, 82, first arrived in Chattanooga as a 22-year-old high school music teacher, Ninth Street, or the Big 9, as it was fondly called, was in full swing. A half-dozen clubs thrived in the five-block area between Foster Street, near where Memo's Grill still sits today, and the railroad overpass near Peeples Street.

LISA DENTON: Barry, you know those comedy skits where serious actors recite song lyrics? Like Christopher Walken reading Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face”: P-p-p-poker face, p-p-poker face. Mum mum mum mah.

You’ve spent months planning that spring break trip to Florida, making lists of what to take, where you will stay, who will be traveling with you and what you will do when you get there.

Chris Thile is excited to again be playing with Sara and Sean Watkins as Nickel Creek. He says the band's very amicable seven-year time-out was much needed, very healthy and allowed the three to grow as individuals. For now, he is glad to be back, but he hopes it is a reunion with a future and not just to remember old times, especially when it comes to the trio's loyal fans.

Q: Dad, we got an outdoor fire pit and have a bunch of wood sitting around. Can we burn it?

About 30 years ago, I was finishing up my degree in broadcast journalism at UTC. It was a brand-new degree and department at the school, so there were only a handful of us pursuing the degree. This gave me access to some pretty amazing stuff for the time.

JAY: Barry, just back from the land of green jackets and pimento cheese sandwiches. Watching the best in golf play at the best course in golf is amazing.

Artist Alexa Lett says getting her own workspace away from her home may have saved her marriage.

Mere minutes before making his comedic debut at the Comedy Catch on Brainerd Road, Billy Brumlow is pacing the lobby area, greeting friends and going over his routine in his head.

About every three months, Hart Gallery owner Ellen Heavilon gets to write checks to area charitable agencies based on the sales of the art pieces sold at the gallery.

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