Alan Govenar

  • Blogs

    June 19, 2012

    Tonight: The 75th Anniversary of Robert Johnson's 508 Park Sessions

    If you've been following the saga of 508 Park Avenue, the building where famed bluesman Robert Johnson recorded between June 19 and 20 in 1937, you'll remember it was pulled back from the edge of demolition, a few ideas for its renovation were tossed around, and its future finally sits in the hands ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 8, 2012

    Your First Look at 508 Park Ave.'s Deck (and Band Shell), And a Rare Photo Taken in '46

    Click to enlarge these first looks at the new-look 508 Park Avenue. You'll find more, many more, below.​Amongst all the maybes, could-bes and one-days downtown, one development's as close as it gets to a Sure Thing: 508 Park Avenue, which First Presbyterian is in the process of turning into The Mu ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 6, 2012

    The View From Atop 508 Park Avenue, Where, Very Soon, the Past Will Meet the Present

    On top of 508 Park Avenue, from left: Alan Govenar, Carol J. Adams, Pat Bywaters and Buddy Jordan​Thursday afternoon I met historian Alan Govenar at 508 Park Avenue, future site of the Museum of Street Culture. He was not alone: Joining him were developer Buddy Jordan, chair of the 508 Park Commit ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 3, 2012

    Alan Govenar to Oversee, Curate "Museum of Street Culture" Planned for 508 Park Avenue

    ​We were reminded just last week: First Presbyterian Church plans not only to install a recording studio inside 508 Park Avenue, a nod to the building's storied history as one of only two spots where bluesman and myth Robert Johnson recorded the music that serves as rock-and-roll's backbone, but t ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 15, 2010

    This Week In Dallas Music History: Blind Lemon Jefferson Featured in a Book and a Play

    ​In this edition of This Week In Dallas Music History, we look back -- way back -- to the 1920s. OK, so the Dallas Observer wasn't exactly in circulation until 1980, but we're referring to an article published in 1998, in which Robert Wilonsky finds historian Alan Govenar, who uncovers the mystery ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 4, 2010

    Eat Local! Eat Cheetos!

    ​The death of Cheez Doodles creator Morrie Yohai last week spawns this New York Times piece today about the myriad other cheese-flavored snacks available, well, everywhere. And it reminds us of another great inventor: Charles Elmer Doolin, the father of Frito and the creator of the Cheeto:Througho ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 16, 2010

    Folkin' A: Documentary Arts' Alan Govenar Is Now a Guggenheim Fellow

    Alan Govenar​A hearty mazel tov this morning to Alan Govenar -- president and founder of Documentary Arts on Columbia Ave. in East Dallas; author of some two dozen books, among them the history of Deep Ellum; renowned playwright and filmmaker whose collected works were just shown at South by South ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 4, 2009

    Big Fan: AFI Dallas Announces Its Complete Line-Up, Minus the Closing-Night Movie(s?)

    Patton Oswalt is the Big Fan, scheduled to play the AFI Dallas International Film Fest this yearMoments ago, the AFI Dallas International Film Festival sent along its complete schedule for this year's fest, which runs March 26 through April 2 -- with, as we've noted before, most screenings taking pl ... More >>

  • News

    January 22, 2009

    Downtown Dallas at the Crossroads

    The city's effort to clean up downtown could cost us important parts of history.

  • Blogs

    January 5, 2009

    Tonight on KERA-Channel 13, A Stroll Through Deep Ellum Past and Present

    There's some kind of football contest on the television tonight. But for those not in a Longhorn state of mind, this programming option courtesy KERA-Channel 13: Tonight's Frame of Mind, which airs at 10 p.m., will feature a series of shorts about Deep Ellum, among them Alan Govenar's Deep Ellum Blu ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 10, 2008

    Once More, a Mayor Will Venture Down to Deep Ellum to, Like, Talk and Stuff

    Notes the good Friend of Unfair Park who shot us this suitable-for-framing poster, today Mayor Tom's meeting with folks from the Deep Ellum Association, ReelFX and historian Alan Govenar in advance of the June 27 meet-and-greet. There will be plenty more forthcoming in this spot over the next two we ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 4, 2008

    The Reel History of Deep Ellum

    Tomorrow night, Frank Campagna's Kettle Art in Deep Ellum will play host to a singular event: a retrospective of films made in and about -- where else? -- Deep Ellum. The lineup encompasses both past and present, with such offerings as historian Alan Govenar's 1985 film Deep Ellum Blues (a 12-minute ... More >>

  • News

    December 20, 2007

    Knights' Tale

    Another historic emblem of black Dallas stands on the brink

  • Blogs

    November 15, 2007

    So, Fellas, What Happened to that $15 Million Development You Promised?

    Apparently, John Wiley Price was talking about the Knights of Pythias Temple today on KNON. Great minds, hunh? So, a Friend of Unfair Park was doing some Interwebs browsing today came across a piece from the Dallas Business Journal in 1996, wherein Dallas developers Cliff Booth and Randy Moses of So ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 25, 2007

    Thanks, Westdale!

    We're pretty sure this photo of the Knights of Pythias Temple was taken many, many years ago. Whilst listening to the Deep Ellum deep-dishing on KERA-FM's Think yesterday afternoon, I overhead Deep Ellum Association prez Gianna Madrini say something about how the Knights of Pythias Temple, located a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 24, 2007

    KERA Thinks About Deep Ellum Today

    Perhaps to get the jump on its Austin counterpart, which airs its Deep Ellum piece on Friday, KERA-FM (90.1) will, at noon today, air its own Deep Ellum roundtable. Think's Krys Boyd will host Alan Govenar, co-author of the book Deep Ellum and Central Track: Where the Black and White Worlds of Dalla ... More >>

  • Calendar

    January 25, 2007

    Suburban Blues

    UTD gets sad and jazzed

  • Calendar

    November 3, 2005
  • Best of Dallas

    September 20, 2001

    Best Blues Club

    Hole in the Wall

  • News

    April 19, 2001

    2001 Dallas Observer Music Awards

    Narrow margins remind us that everyone's a winner

  • Culture

    April 5, 2001

    Mixed Signals

    The group of artists assembled for Alternative Currents displays the highs and lows of video art

  • Film

    April 27, 2000

    Fest intentions

    USA Film Festival: Amargosa, Committed, The Devil's Swing, Dropping Out, Hamlet, Lush, The Natural History of the Chicken, Split Decision, The Target Shoots First, Steal This Movie

  • Music

    October 28, 1999

    Rock this town

    Or: Oh,'s another end-of-the-century list

  • Music

    June 17, 1999

    The preacher and the Prophet

    Why can't we all just get along? The history, or not, of Russell and Jeff's Deep Ellum

  • Culture

    June 3, 1999

    Size matters

    For the world premiere of Blind Lemon to work, either the production needs to be smaller or the space needs to be larger

  • Music

    May 27, 1999

    Seeing it through

    Blind Lemon Jefferson musical (or is it?) finally opens its eyes

  • News

    April 15, 1999

    Blues no more

    After waiting and worrying, playwrights finally see opening date for Blind Lemon musical

  • News

    December 10, 1998

    Out of the rubble

    A new book on Deep Ellum's past strips away the dust of myth and history

  • Music

    November 12, 1998

    Eyesight to the Blind

    A historian and a playwright bring a Dallas blues legend's story to the stage

  • Music

    February 12, 1998

    Spoth the ravin'

    Mark Ridlen continues his sonic adventure

  • Calendar

    December 25, 1997
  • Calendar

    October 23, 1997
  • Calendar

    February 20, 1997
  • Calendar

    October 31, 1996
  • Film

    April 18, 1996
  • Music

    February 15, 1996

    The shaman and his savior

    Documentary Arts preserves the lost music of the Hmong