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Swingin’ Our way

In our current book, Twentieth-Century Honky-Tonk, co-writer Brett Bingham and I devote a good number of pages to the role Tulsa played in the development and popularization of the music that came to be known as western swing. The Oklahoma part of the story started after bandleader Bob Wills brought his group, the Playboys, across the Red River, changing...

A Hunger to Heal

The 2014 Oklahoma Teacher of the Year, Peter Markes, is shifting directions and using music to expand frontiers on a broader scale. With Markes at the helm for 15 years, the Edmond North High School Orchestra performed twice in the National Youth Concert in Carnegie Hall. The orchestra earned 15 consecutive top State Sweepstakes Awards, received annual invitations to perform...

A Tribute to Blackwell

Tulsa drummer and songwriter Chuck Blackwell began etching his name into pop culture history some 60 years ago, as one of the original guys who headed west from T-Town to enrich the southern California music scene with his locally honed talents. Over the next couple of decades, Blackwell would show up in a variety of key places, from the...