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Oklahoma Concerts & Events

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Just north of Texas, Oklahoma is part of the South-Central region of the United States. In the shadows of other music powerhouses in the south such as Austin and Nashville, Oklahoma’s assets are not paid proper attention and accolade. Yet, the state is deep in a period of music revival. Old venues are resurrected and new ones open, and newer artists are continuing to step into the spotlight in these reinvented spaces. Read below to uncover what makes Oklahoma a worthwhile place for listening enthusiasts.

Oklahoma has built new venues in recent years, which has increased the number of concerts being held in the state

Lately, Oklahoma has seen newfound growth in its music scene, spurred in relation with its expansion of venues. For listeners, this development means that Oklahoma is prepared to host more live concerts by more local and national artists. Whether these venues are newbuilds or reopening of historic sites, this is good news for arts in Oklahoma. Some of these new and revamped venues include places such as Tower Theatre, The Academy of Contemporary Music, and The Blue Door.

The Criterion is one of these new venues. It seats up to four thousand people. Adjustable seating in an industrial space means that the space can be altered to suit large shows and smaller affairs. In October, Criterion’s stage will hold: Kevin Gates, Luca Brasi, Arctic Monkeys, Mini Mansions, Cody Jinks, Justin Moore, and more. The Jones Assembly is another new spot expanding the listening opportunities in Oklahoma. A restaurant and venue hybrid, The Jones Assembly offers a diversified listening experience. Concerts offer VIP seating at the bar and standard standing admission on the floor, where the restaurant setup is often cleared out. The Jones Assembly gravitates towards rising talent but features its share of national stars. Performers on the horizon include Steve Tyrell, Randy Rogers Band, Matt Stansberr, The Romance, Mat Kearney, Atlas Genius, Father John Misty, The New Respects, and Colony House.

Although Oklahoma is not new to music, its newer artists are out there and performing great live concerts

Oklahoma is not new to music. Over one hundred years ago, the incredible American singer-songwriter Woody Guthrie was born in Okemah. He helped shape a generation of artists, an imprint of which can be seen to this day. Other notable stars came after him, such as Roger Miller and Leon Russell. Although this history should not be downplayed, it is clear that Oklahoman music is in a newfound stage of revival and regrowth. For listeners looking to tap into new talent, local loves include the Bronchos, Deerpeople, Horse Thief, John Moreland, Josh Sallee, Parker Millsap, Prettyboy, Tallows, Wink Burcham, and Zach Winters.

Oklahoma is much like other states, down to its relationship with music

When entering a music scene as a listener, it is natural to seek out aspects of it that are different from others. However, when it comes to Oklahoma, the familiarity is a good sign. Places like Oklahoma are under the radar in America. Many Americans do not know where Oklahoma is or are able to share anything notable about the state. However, Oklahoma has more in common with the rest of the union that might be seen at first glance. These similarities can be seen in the music industry, which has been called the next Austin or the next Nashville by some in the industry.

For example, the Okgazette noticed that people expect Oklahoma’s music scene to be composed of country and folk. In reality, the story of Oklahoman music is much more nuanced that that. This state has brought up some of the most successful names in contemporary pop. One Republic’s Ryan Tedder is from Tulsa. The All-American Rejects all grew up in Oklahoma. The Flaming Lips come from Oklahoma City. Beyond this, Oklahoma has some variety in its music culture in terms of genre. Hardcore, screamo, hip-hop, and alternative have had their moments, with national artists being celebrated when in town and local musicians maneuvering new sounds to play with trends.

Listeners who do not expect Oklahoma to have a large and expanding music footprint will be pleased by the direction this state is taking. Oklahoma has good musicians making sounds in various genres and is an under appreciated contributor to the national soundscape. In other words, Oklahoma holds its own. Be pleasantly surprised when taking in a live show in the Sooner State.