21st-Century Digital Boy

Artist Sloane McFarland has one foot in the art world and one foot in the real estate world. One must wonder what his closet looks like: equal parts smock and yellow blazer? Regardless, he is being talked about as one of the most exciting artists in Arizona. A third-generation Arizonan, McFarland definitely feels a part of this state -- more specifically, historic Scottsdale. The Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art wants him to be a part of its history as well. "southwestNET: Sloane McFarland" opens Saturday, September 20, exploring notions of history, space and urban expansion. Erin Kane, SMoCA's assistant curator, says, "One of the most interesting things about Sloane's work is that his personal history is tied to the actual site of the show." McFarland spent many a day in the old United Artists cinema, now the site of SMoCA.

The artist's digital media works are on display through January 4, 2004, at the museum, 7374 East Second Street in downtown Scottsdale. Call 480-994-ARTS or see www.smoca.org. - Maidi Terry

Foam Sweet Foam

Festival taps the suds

Sat 9/20
This weekend in Tucson, for 50 bucks, you can sample 24 beers, then get a massage. It's all part of the Great Tucson Beer Festival, which celebrates its 17th year Saturday, September 20. Event chairman Don Jones is expecting more than 3,000 people at Hi Corbett Field, where, aside from the drinking, there'll be food, magic tricks and a concert by Breech, an L.A.-based band that's opened for Weezer, the White Stripes, and Liz Phair. General-admission tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the gate; VIP tickets are $50. For more information, visit www.azbeer.com. - Paul Kix

A Few of Our Favorite Kings

Band is as thick as blood

Tue 9/23
They've been on Lollapalooza, Letterman and Last Call With Carson Daly. On Tuesday, September 23, Kings of Leon come to the Bash on Ash, 230 West Fifth Street in Tempe.

"We're definitely excited about them," says Jill Calkins, marketing director at the Bash. "It's different than what's out there." Indeed. The press has called the Kings everything from "Lynyrd Skynyrd incarnate" to "the Southern Strokes." The Kings say they're just a band -- screw the labeling. In any case, "They're a great buzz band. I'd like to think there'd be a lot of interest," says Tom LaPenna of Nobody in Particular Presents, the show's promoter.

All of them related -- and all in their teens or 20s -- the Kings were raised by a Pentecostal minister who split his sermons between Oklahoma and Tennessee. A couple of years ago, the band moved to Nashville; songwriting followed, a record deal with RCA after that. In October, they'll tour with The Strokes. See www.bashonash.com for more information on the show; tickets are $12 through www.ticketmaster.com. Paul Kix

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Paul Kix
Maidi Terry