A rockin’ retrospective

The Lewis – Clark State College Center for Art and History will embrace Lewiston’s musical history with its new exhibit, Rock n’ Roll Retrospective.

“(The exhibit) is a celebration of the history of different bands that sprung up in the Lewiston valley from the ‘60s and ‘70s,” said Debra Fitzgerald, the director of the Lewis – Clark State College Center for Art and History.

The exhibit showcases band posters, T-shirts, concert memorabilia and records of local bands from the age of classic rock, Fitzgerald said.

The exhibit coordinators have put in a light show styled after those used in dance halls in Lewiston during the ‘60s and ‘70s, Fitzgerald said.

“We’re doing a little nod to the light show, making it interactive so kids can make shapes and their own show,” said Kelsey Grafton, the exhibit coordinator.

Mike Feeney, a local historian, put together a family tree showing all of the different bands from the area that are featured in the exhibit, Grafton said. Some of the band members from the family tree will be participating in a panel discussion happening after the reception.

Members from different groups will also perform after the reception, including Paul Speer, a Lewiston native and former member of the band Stone Garden.

“I have two brothers and we started a trio together when we were kids … I think I was 11 when we started,” Speer said.

They went on to play through high school and eventually got signed onto a record deal, traveling around the world performing.

Speer donated some of his band’s memorabilia to the exhibit, and he will perform live with his guitar over pre-recorded tracks from a few of his albums.

Before Speer performs, members from several different bands will get together to play a set of classic rock covers.

The main goal of the exhibit is to showcase the talent the Lewiston area has to offer, as well as to bring the community together, Fitzgerald said.

“One of our goals is to develop an exhibit the community can relate to,” she said.

Through the design of the exhibit, Grafton hopes to engage visitors and make it their own.

“We have a couple chalkboards so people can continue the conversation, share local hotspots, favorite concert moments,” Grafton said. “We know we didn’t cover everything, so this way people can include some things we missed.”

“The show is partially a reunion and partially a way to educate the public of what can come from our area,” she said.

Grafton said she hopes the exhibit will not just teach, but also inspire.

“There’s a lot of talent from our area, it’s kinda a way to show we have culture and it comes from back then,” she said. “Kids now can be inspired by past bands.”

The Rock n’ Roll Retrospective exhibit is open from Jan. 30-Feb. 21. The reception takes place today from 5-6:30 p.m., followed by the panel discussion from 6:15-7:00 p.m. After the discussion is the first concert, a set of classic rock covers from 7-7:45 p.m. Paul Speer will close the night with his performance from 7:30-8 p.m. Amy Canfield, a WSU alumnus, will come Feb. 5 at 5 p.m. to give a presentation on Elvis.