Darel Snodgrass

Classical Music Host

I began piano lessons at age 6, trumpet at age 9, and began teaching myself the guitar at 10. My electronics knowledge comes from my father, who had the RCA television and stereo shop in my hometown of Pocahontas, Arkansas for nearly 20 years. My dad is still fixing televisions at age 79.

I attended the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville as a music major, and worked weekend shifts at the U of A radio station (my first experience playing classical music on the radio).  I spent a summer playing piano, guitar and bass at the defunct “L'il Abner”- based theme park Dogpatch USA, near Harrison, Arkansas. After a few years playing music professionally, I finished a BS degree in Radio/TV production at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro. 

After another few years playing music in the Ozarks, I moved to Memphis with my wife. I’ve served as Operations Manager of WKNO-FM since 1988, and morning Classical Music host since 1994 – conducting more than 4,500 Checking on the Arts interviews along the way.

Ways to Connect

Napa Café along with Frederick Wildman and Sons, The Wine Market and Chocistry will host two benefit dinners for the Soulsville Foundation on Sunday August 19th & Monday August 20th, 2012. This special dinner will feature six courses with wine pairings. Additionally, each course will be paired with a specific song from the Stax catalog. The songs will be performed live by the students of the Stax Music Academy throughout the evening.

Soulsville USA, the neighborhood that spawned Stax Records, is the target of an ambitious revitalization plan building on the community’s musical heritage and a decade of community investment from public and private sources. A $678,195 grant from Chicago-based ArtPlace will give the plan a significant jump-start.


Brin Armstrong and Dale Baucum met in the spring of 1972 when both were students at the Memphis Acadamy of Arts (now Memphis College of Art), and have since formed one of the most impressive bodies of artistic work in the Mid-South.  "Double Vision" opens with a lecture at 2 pm Sunday, July 29 and takes an in-depth look at this legacy.  Darel Snodgrass spoke with Brin and Dale Baucum about their beginnings, their work, and this new show.

For more information, check www.dixon.org or www.baucumpottery.com.

Dr. Neal Larson is well-known for discovering and excavating the famous Tyrannosaurus Rex known as Sue, and the associated legal battles that went along with that discovery.

Tennessee Shakespeare Company just finished their fourth season with a production of Tennessee Williams' "The Glass Menagerie," performed on the beautiful South Lawn of the Dixon Gallery and Gardens.  Not content to rest on their laurels, this year they are offering Summer Shakespeare Camps for young actors.  Darel Snodgrass spoke with Tennessee Shakespeare Company Education Director Stephanie Shine about the upcoming camps.


For more information, www.tnshakespeare.org.

The Prizm Chamber Music Festival returns to Shady Grove Presbyterian Church the week of June 11.  Although the classes are closed, there will be four concerts open to the public, at 7 pm on the 11th, 14th, 15th and 16th.  Each performance will feature the unique instrumentation and eclectic musical selections for which the group is known.   Darel Snodgrass spoke with Prizm Ensemble founder Lecolian Washington about the upcoming festival.


For more information, http://www.prizmensemble.com/.

On Friday, June 8th, the University of Memphis presents the annual Delta Conference, a fascinating and fun look into the history, traditions, lore and art of our region.  Two of the presenters this year are local filmmaker Willy Bearden and beloved artist and art educator Dolph Smith.  They spoke with Darel Snodgrass about the conference and their own parts in it.


For more information about the Delta Conference http://www.memphis.edu/deltaconference/

Claire Lynch has one of the most identifiable voices in Bluegrass music today, as well as a huge collection of songwriting credits and a couple of Best Female Vocalist awards from the International Bluegrass Music Association.  She will be appearing at Collierville United Methodist Church at 8 pm on Friday the 11th, and at the Collins Theatre in downtown Paragould, Arkansas at 7 pm on Monday the 14th.  Darel Snodgrass spoke with Claire about her career.


The new exhibition at the Dixon Gallery and Gardens is "Modern Dialect:  American Paintings from the John and Susan Horseman Collection."  This is a natural extension of the very successful 2009 exhibition "Regional Dialect," which was also taken from the Horseman collection.  Dixon Director Kevin Sharpe talked with Darel Snodgrass about this important new show of American art.


For information, hours, and special events, dixon.org or 761-5250.

The Buckman Performing and Fine Arts Center at St. Mary's Episcopal School has announced their 2012-2013 season;  as usual, it contains a fine and varied assortment of entertainers.  Darel Snodgrass talked with Buckman Director Cindi Younker about the new "sweet sixteen" season.


For more information, call the Buckman at (901)537-1483, or buckmanartscenter.com.