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The Fall Season Kicks Off

A plethora of arts offerings present themselves in Oklahoma this fall. In Tulsa, visit the TCC Van Trease PACE for Signature Symphony’s Rachmaninoff and the Dance Floor, which explores music with American composer Mason Bates. The PACE also welcomes Tulsa Opera’s The Italian Girl on Oct. 28 and 30. Celebrity Attractions’ Hadestown continues its run at the PAC until Oct....

Hosting a Ghost or Two

As Brett Bingham and I noted in our recent book, Twentieth-Century Honky-Tonk, what might be termed the “modern era” of Tulsa’s Cain’s Ballroom began 48 years ago this month, when a pair of young Tulsa promoters – R.C. Bradley and Jim Edwards – talked the owner into letting them book a Halloween show featuring neither Western-swing nor country-music acts....

To Be Understood

Until a recent visit with the up-and-coming singer-songwriter-musician Madeline Kassen, who created her latest album under the name Pisha, I had never encountered the term “bedroom pop.”  But then again, there was no reason I should’ve. It applies to her generation, not mine. And it’s a style she not only knows well, but also has utilized to her advantage. “Bedroom pop,”...

The Leavening Power of Humor

Vida and Daniel Schuman, Oklahoma Magazine’s publisher and president/editorial director, respectively, have graciously allowed my writing to occupy this space for well over 15 years now. And while that’s maybe been more of a blessing to me than it’s been to readers, I remain deeply grateful to have this platform to, among other things, celebrate some of the people...

Pitchlynn’s Poems, Reimagined

The new CD Poems to Songs: Hatchootucknee (Snapping Turtle) can be seen, at least in part, as a family affair – that is, if you don’t have any trouble with the “family” connection skipping past nine or ten generations. The disc’s origins run all the way back to the early 1800s, with an important Choctaw figure named Peter Pitchlynn,...

Music, Festivals, Oh My! 

Happening around town in Bartlesville, the OKM Musical Festival runs June 9-13. For the past 38 years, the festival has bought celebrated concert artists and music education programs to northeast Oklahoma. Highlights of this year’s event include performances from Balourdet Quartet, Catherine Russell, Josh Turner and Verona Quartet. Learn more at okmmusic.org.  Celebrate Juneteenth at the Tulsa Juneteenth Festival June...

Red Dirt Developments

More than 30 years after it first began rising out of the Oklahoma clay, in and around a funky, old two-story farmhouse outside of Stillwater, the music that came to be known as Red Dirt continues to win fans and influence performers worldwide. Here are a couple of recent developments involving the genre:  First came the news that Cody Canada...

Eric Himan

Eric Himan, an award-winning recording artist based in Oklahoma City, serves at the director of events for Myriad Botanical Garden as well as the music director for the Scissortail Park Foundation. He has toured nationally with Leon Russell and Ani DiFranco, and has produced 10 original albums. We caught up with Eric and got his thoughts on ... ... being...

Women of Song

Those of you who regularly visit this space know that I’ve written a great deal about that elusive musical genre known as the classic Tulsa Sound. It’s something I first started researching in earnest almost four decades ago, when I went to work for the Tulsa World newspaper as an entertainment writer, and it’s been a continuous source of...

An Auditory Snapshot

We’ve all seen them, in books or museums or maybe in someone’s collection: snapshots from bygone times, capturing forever via an amateur’s lens something of great historical importance. It might be a political figure at a microphone, barely recognizable above the heads of the listening crowd. It could be a little black-and-white candid of a kid at play, taken...