Before we all took a long weekend to celebrate apple pie and fireworks, Jeff and Larry and I journeyed up the turnpike on one of many trips to Tulsa. We headed up to do some work on the intro video for the website (which launches THIS WEEK---check it out at www.anotherhotoklahomanight.org),to meet with the founders of Dfest, and various and sundry other meetings.
When we first arrived (after a hilarious journey in the mysteriously shaking Taurus that is like a massage chair for everyone in the car) we had lunch at a fabulous restaurant called "The Brook" in Brookside. Let's just say that we were all jealous of Jeff's humongous salad with its heaps of parmesan chicken. There, we met with Davit Souders, who hosts the relaunched iROK Radio. Davit is a radio broadcaster, the owner of Diabolical Productions, was the talent/media buyer and production manager for Cain's Ballroom for many years, and still has time to perform himself. He regaled us with stories about Oklahoma rock across the past few decades as well as background to the many roles he has served in the Oklahoma rock scene. He gave us several contacts and some good stories; we will set up an interview with him soon to get the stories on film (we must remember to ask him about his favorite Hanson Song...).
Right across the street from The Brook, Jeff saw Angelene Wright go in the front door of a shop that turned out to be her store "Ida Red." Jeff and Larry made a lot of fun of me for not knowing what the reference was--but once they explained it made total sense. Feel free to google it. The store, recently opened, is a cool mix of Cain's Ballroom merchandise (t-shirts, golf shirts, belt buckles, floor tiles, books, etc.) and a cafe-type space with artwork that is also for sale, vintagey chairs and tables, glass bottles of myriad sodas like Dublin Dr. Pepper and old-school sweets like Moon Pies and Squirrel Nut Zippers. It is a cool place to find clothing, including a table of earth-friendly organic shirts, kitschy hand-made jewelry and a cool place to hang out and listen to a wide assortment of music chosen by Angeline herself.
Jeff and Larry compared stories with Angelene about musicians who lived/used to live in Tulsa and Tulsa venues for at least an hour. It was a meeting of kindred spirits--people who absolutely love music, and especially the part Oklahoma has played in the nation-wide music scene.
We finally tore ourselves away after buying a copy of almost every CD the store stocked and headed out. We stopped at Starship Records so Jeff could relive his teenage years spent in the store and so I could wander through the racks and racks of music. We hoped to pick up a few things to add to Collections for the exhibit, but had no luck. Then we headed over to Cherry Street for coffee at a coffee shop (and yet another meeting) that I could easily live in I loved it so much. This was my first time in these parts of Tulsa, and I must say that it is stunning!!
Later in the afternoon, we headed downtown. We passed Black Wall Street (which I have only ever read about) and stopped finally at Cain's. After reading and learning so much about the venue, it was amazing to see the stars on the sidewalk and look up at the marquee that I have seen so many pictures of. People kept disappearing inside the bar that was at the end of the strip (I kept wondering what was so exciting that so many people were going to that I wandered down to check it out). Larry and Jeff were taking video and stills of the exterior of Cain's to be used in the introductory video on the exhibit website. Larry got some sweet shots of Jeff on his back on the scorching hot sidewalk to get the perfect angle. After Cain's, we drove over to the Brady Theatre to repeat the process. By this time my 4 inch heels were killing me (I hadn't planned on going to Tulsa when I dressed that morning) and so I stuck to the air-conditioned car and watched them run around in the heat.
Our last stop before we hit the road back to OKC was at the Crowne Plaza downtown to meet with Tom Green and Angie Devore-Green, the husband-wife team that founded Dfest and continue to organize the ever-growing music festival. We talked to them about our space at the festival around the Oklahoma stage and all sorts of other little details. By the way, the Crowne Plaza is where we will be staying along with all the other conference and concert attendees and they just redecorated the interior--I did not want to leave the awesome sitting area we were meeting in! Eventually, we had to let Angie and Tom go to their volunteer meeting and we got back in the car to go back to the History Center.
We left the city pumped about what we had accomplished. We are all set to go to Dfest (come meet us there and nominate a song for the Official Rock Song of Oklahoma and get your picture taken with all your friends at our rock band photo op), we got a lot done for the intro video, and we made many new and exciting contacts. All the way home we listened to the press conference about the Sonics court case (Jeff and Larry are sooooo happy the team is coming NOW and not in two years), and I complained about being hungry until Larry stopped at McDonalds to shut me up. We finally made it home exhausted but totally excited.