Portland has become a hotbed of musical talent in recent years. And it’s not unusual for musicians be part of a couple or even several bands. But every once in a while, one of those bands will really gel, like Sleepy Bell. Their vocal harmonies and novel instrumentation produce a unique sound that’s as much fun for audiences to hear as they are for the band to play. Tune in to OREGON ART BEAT on Thursday, December 23 at 8pm and see how it all comes together off stage and on for this upbeat group of musicians.

The harpsichord’s had its heyday in the 17th and 18th centuries. By the 20th Century, it had fallen out of favor … until a Polish harpsichordist began playing Bach. That sound is what turned college student Byron Will from majoring in climatology to music. He fell in love with the harpsichord so deeply, that he now makes them for a living. The process starts with carefully choosing the wood that matches his tonal idea. He then crafts each piece by hand, decorates the finished product with the distinctive faux marble technique, and tunes it to that unique half-step low of the harpsichord. This “magician of sound,” as he has been called, is so successful that he has a long waiting list for his beautiful musical instruments.

It’s the time of year that brings Santa Claus to mind. The classic picture you have in your mind of Santa may very well be influenced by Bend artist Tom Browning. He’s the best-known painter of Santa’s in the country. ART BEAT drops in on this fine art painter whose canvases, including landscapes, portraits and Western art, sell for thousands.

You can watch entire ART BEAT broadcasts at watch.opb.org. Video of the stories featured on ART BEAT can be viewed online immediately following the broadcast at opb.org/programs/artbeat.

Check out the ART BEAT blog at blogs.opb.org/artful/ and join us on facebook at facebook.com/OregonArtBeat.


OREGON ART BEAT, Oregon Public Broadcasting’s Emmy-Award winning local arts series, is in its 12th season. ART BEAT profiles Northwest artists, musicians and artisans — from an operatic baritone to a bit-and-spur craftsman to everything in between. The program airs Thursdays at 8pm and Sundays at 1am and 6pm. In the Mountain Time Zone of Eastern Oregon, the program airs at 9pm Thursdays and repeats at 7pm on Sundays. Funding for OREGON ART BEAT is provided in part by James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation and the Kinsman Foundation. More information is available online at opb.org/artbeat.

About OPB

OPB is the largest cultural and education institution in the region, delivering excellence in broadcasting to more than 1.5 million people each week through television, radio and the Internet. Recognized as a national leader in public broadcasting, OPB is a major contributor to the program schedule that serves the entire country. OPB is one of the most used and most supported public broadcasting services in the country with more than 120,000 contributors.