Strangest Mix of Acts Headline MAD Festival

    Migos, ZZ Top, Brad Paisley, Ludacris, Train, and More Headline the Arts at MAD Festival


    El Dorado, Arkansas isn’t necessarily known for their booming arts industry, but the city has crafted together what might just be the strangest music festival in the US right now in a new effort to raise interest in the arts and bring culture to the once booming oil-town.

    Migos, Train, Brad Paisley, ZZ Top, Smokey Robinson, Ludacris, and more are slated to perform during the opening week of their newly crafted Arts District, which, when acronym-ed, comes out to MAD (Murphy Arts District)- appropriate considering how ‘mad’ the lineup truly is. The new district’s acronym is also aptly crafted as an ode to the major corporations of the area- Murphy USA, Murphy Oil Corp., and Deltic Timber Corporation.

    $100 million is being invested into bringing arts and culture to El Dorado, and their decision to invite the top artists of today, as well as the living legends of various musical genres, proves that they are planning to reach a broad range of audiences for this epic opening week. If hitting a wide range of demos was their goal, they’ve certainly succeeded in outdoing the rest of the festival game.

    Former Rock and Roll Hall of Fame President, Terry Stewart, along with House of Blues executive Dan Smith are spearheading this major project, and on the newly revamped art’s district within the city, Stewart mentioned in the press release:

    “Many industry people think I’m ‘MAD’ when I tell them about the El Dorado project. But it’s going to be the most important work of my career when one considers the lives that will be changed by the economic redevelopment and cultural infusion we are working to achieve.”

    If there was ever an opportunity to explore the world of country, soul, ATL hip hop through the ages, and some old school rock, a trip to El Dorado might just be in order.

    For those looking for more information on the new Murphy Arts District or the upcoming performances, check out their homepage here.


    Wednesday, September 27

    8:30 p.m.– An Evening with Lyle Lovett, Robert Earl Keen & John Hiatt (Griffin Restaurant)

    Thursday, September 28

    8 p.m.– Natasha Bedingfield (Griffin Music Hall)

    9 p.m. – Train (Griffin Music Hall)

    Friday, September 29

    6 p.m.– Robert Randolph Band (Amphitheater)

    7:30 p.m.– X-Ambassadors (Amphitheater)

    9 p.m. – ZZ Top (Amphitheater)

    11:30 p.m.– Ludacris (Griffin Music Hall)

    Saturday, September 30

    6 p.m.– Chase Bryant (Amphitheater)

    9 p.m. – Brad Paisley (Amphitheater)

    11:30 – Migos (Griffin Music Hall)

    Sunday, October 1

    4 p.m. – Smokey Robinson with the South Arkansas Symphony (Amphitheater; free concert open to the public