Open season at The Colony

Local musician Cody Clinton offers singer-songwriters a unique showcase.



Open mic night.

The very phrase is awkward. Uncomfortable. Cringe-inducing. It conjures for me the following scene:

That guy (all of us knew that guy) who played a little guitar in high school but never pursued the instrument seriously, has decided that tonight is the night. Tonight, his Big Musical Moment — the one he fantasized about while strumming purposefully yet unnoticed in the corner of a frat house kegger — will suddenly materialize out of thin air simply because he summoned the courage to write his name on a list.

And that guy, after a couple of awful, hackneyed renditions of Sublime’s “What I Got” or Pink Floyd’s “Wish You Were Here,” with vocals off-pitch and guitar out of tune, will slink back to his barstool, glowing with the rush of adrenaline, while stilted applause trickles out from the tiny fraction of the assembled audience polite enough to offer it.

And then, unmercifully, torturously, it’s the next guy’s turn. Lather, rinse, repeat.

Fortunately, Cody Clinton doesn’t want to hear that guy or anyone like him. Over the past few months, he has attracted a regular following of like-minded musicians and music lovers who share his vision of a different kind of open mic night.

Clinton is best known in Tulsa as one half of the excellent folk-rock duo Desi & Cody, but he’s ubiquitous as a lead guitarist all over the Tulsa music scene. He started “Singer-Songwriter Night” on Monday nights at The Colony, one of Tulsa’s most reliable venues for original live music, with the hope that he might attract folks who aren’t interested in playing (or hearing) the same poorly-performed, clichéd covers that infest most other free-for-all stages. He wanted to find serious songwriters, serious musicians, who have well-honed original material but no other outlet to showcase it.

The experiment has worked better than he could’ve ever hoped.

“I never expected this many people to show up,” Clinton says one Monday night as the sign-up list is so full he has to flip the page over, which by all accounts has become the weekly norm. “And it surprises me week after week. I don’t know what it is. Open mics can usually get really bad, but there’s something about the vibe here. We keep getting these great musicians just coming out of the woodwork.”

That vibe can probably be attributed to the collective admiration among the regulars, which is immediately apparent once the performances begin. A hush falls over the crowd. People listen. They applaud supportively. A shared enthusiasm for the entire enterprise is palpable.

Clinton and regular Monday bartender Nate Alexander chat about the event’s early incarnations, during which this coveted vibe hadn’t completely coalesced.

“People used to come in and do their three covers,” Alexander says. “But the crowd just kind of ran them off. Not in a mean way or anything, it was just sort of understood. People got the point pretty quickly that this wasn’t that kind of thing.”

Clinton originally offered the musicians an opportunity to record their sets, but the amount of signups swelled so quickly that he had to abandon that aspect for logistical reasons. He’s still toying with the idea of choosing a performer each week for an extended set, beyond the standard three songs that is the Monday night rule.

Whatever its future, this weekly showcase, which Clinton wasn’t even sure would attract enough interest to fill up just one night of music, seems to grow in popularity with every passing week. Even on “slow” nights, the audience at The Colony dwarfs a typical Monday night bar crowd.

“We’ve got something special going on here,” Alexander says. “And it’s not going away.”

It’s funny — I’ve heard that exact sentiment from all corners of the Tulsa music scene for a couple of years now, and it’s true every time. Then something like Cody Clinton’s Singer-Songwriter Night comes along and makes it even truer.

It makes you wonder: What’s next?

August’s best bets for live music

8/11 Milkdrive, Jacob Tovar and the Saddle Tramps, Whirligig; Guthrie Green

Austin “jazz grass” string band Milkdrive will set downtown to shaking with a show that “crosses genres, geographies and generations.” Throw in local honkey tonk troubadour Jacob Tovar and his merry band, plus longtime Tulsa mainstays Whirligig, and you’ve got quite the enjoyable Sunday on the lawn.

8/23 Elephant Revival, Vanguard Music Hall

Independent film director Mikey Eberle describes the band thusly: “When I hear Elephant Revival I am struck by my inability to define it. I am forced to confront the music as it is, connecting to it with a virgin spirit of mind. Consequently it feels like I am experiencing music and all its joys for the very first time.” Sound like something you might be interested in? Featuring a couple of guitars, an upright bass, a fiddle, a washboard and some hauntingly beautiful voices, this eclectic, folk-inspired ensemble is no stranger to Tulsa, and if you have yet to catch them, now is the time.

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March 2019

As Lakota artist Oscar Howe wrote in 1958, “There is much more to Indian art than pretty, stylized pictures.” This exhibition highlights this depth and the 20th century American masters who...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Few animals conjure the power and symbolic presence of the North American bison. Whether painted on a tipi or an artist’s canvas, minted on a nickel, or seen grazing in Yellowstone National Park,...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

The Museum’s Dickinson Research Center is home to more than 700,000 photographs, 44,000 books, and perhaps unexpectedly, at least 1,000 horses. Meet some of the herd in Horseplay, the new...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

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Men and women from across the American West played critical roles — both “over there” and on the home front — in helping the Allies win World War I. The American Expeditionary Force (AEF)...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

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               It's baseball time in Tulsa! Come and support the Golden Eagles on their road to the NCAA 2019 championship. All children ages 13 and under, accompanied by an adult, will be...

Cost: 7-14

Where:
J.L. JOHNSON STADIUM
7777 S Lewis Ave
Tulsa, OK  74137
View map »


Website »

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Looking for something for your kids to do while you go to work this Spring Break?  Spotlight Theatre is offering this acting class taught by Crayons Improv.  Crayons will lead your...

Cost: 175

Where:
Spotlight Theatre
1381 Riverside Drive
Tulsa, OK  74127
View map »


Sponsor: Crayons Improv
Telephone: 918-557-5616
Contact Name: Nicole
Website »

More information

As Lakota artist Oscar Howe wrote in 1958, “There is much more to Indian art than pretty, stylized pictures.” This exhibition highlights this depth and the 20th century American masters who...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Men and women from across the American West played critical roles — both “over there” and on the home front — in helping the Allies win World War I. The American Expeditionary Force (AEF)...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Few animals conjure the power and symbolic presence of the North American bison. Whether painted on a tipi or an artist’s canvas, minted on a nickel, or seen grazing in Yellowstone National Park,...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

The Museum’s Dickinson Research Center is home to more than 700,000 photographs, 44,000 books, and perhaps unexpectedly, at least 1,000 horses. Meet some of the herd in Horseplay, the new...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Think you can’t do something? Think again! All workshops are from 12 to 12:45 p.m. on Mondays in the Center for Creativity. All supplies provided. No workshop March 18.

Cost: Free and open to the public

Where:
McKeon Center for Creativity
910 S. Boston Ave.
TCC Metro Campus
Tulsa, OK  74135
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Community College
Telephone: 918-595-7339
Contact Name: Cindy Armstrong
Website »

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Magi 4 Christ Campers meet each Monday at 6:00 PM until 7:30 PM. At 4241 S. 37th W. Ave., Tulsa, OK. 74107.  We are a Christian group of camping enthusiasts. We are family friendly. Meeting...

Cost: Donations only

Where:
Hope House
4241 S. 37th W. Ave.
South Door Activity Center
Tulsa, OK  74107
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Sponsor: Magi 4 Christ Campers
Telephone: 918-906-0564
Contact Name: Dorothy Brown

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WHAT: Dunkin’ is proud to keep Tyler Carach – aka The Donut Boy – running as he hands out thousands of donuts to police officers across the country with his next stop in Tulsa, Oklahoma....

Cost: Free

Where:
Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office
303 W 1st St
Tulsa, OK  74103
View map »

More information

Looking for something for your kids to do while you go to work this Spring Break?  Spotlight Theatre is offering this acting class taught by Crayons Improv.  Crayons will lead your...

Cost: 175

Where:
Spotlight Theatre
1381 Riverside Drive
Tulsa, OK  74127
View map »


Sponsor: Crayons Improv
Telephone: 918-557-5616
Contact Name: Nicole
Website »

More information

As Lakota artist Oscar Howe wrote in 1958, “There is much more to Indian art than pretty, stylized pictures.” This exhibition highlights this depth and the 20th century American masters who...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

The Museum’s Dickinson Research Center is home to more than 700,000 photographs, 44,000 books, and perhaps unexpectedly, at least 1,000 horses. Meet some of the herd in Horseplay, the new...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Few animals conjure the power and symbolic presence of the North American bison. Whether painted on a tipi or an artist’s canvas, minted on a nickel, or seen grazing in Yellowstone National Park,...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Men and women from across the American West played critical roles — both “over there” and on the home front — in helping the Allies win World War I. The American Expeditionary Force (AEF)...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

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Bring the whole family over to the Whitty Books next Wednesday the 20th for a drop-in clay workshop! This special extended-hours polymer clay workshop is just what your Spring Break needs! Perfect...

Cost: $8

Where:
Whitty Books
2407 E Admiral Blvd
Tulsa, OK  74110
View map »


Sponsor: Tiny Things by Bowen
Contact Name: Sarah Bowen
Website »

More information

Looking for something for your kids to do while you go to work this Spring Break?  Spotlight Theatre is offering this acting class taught by Crayons Improv.  Crayons will lead your...

Cost: 175

Where:
Spotlight Theatre
1381 Riverside Drive
Tulsa, OK  74127
View map »


Sponsor: Crayons Improv
Telephone: 918-557-5616
Contact Name: Nicole
Website »

More information

Few animals conjure the power and symbolic presence of the North American bison. Whether painted on a tipi or an artist’s canvas, minted on a nickel, or seen grazing in Yellowstone National Park,...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

As Lakota artist Oscar Howe wrote in 1958, “There is much more to Indian art than pretty, stylized pictures.” This exhibition highlights this depth and the 20th century American masters who...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Men and women from across the American West played critical roles — both “over there” and on the home front — in helping the Allies win World War I. The American Expeditionary Force (AEF)...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

The Museum’s Dickinson Research Center is home to more than 700,000 photographs, 44,000 books, and perhaps unexpectedly, at least 1,000 horses. Meet some of the herd in Horseplay, the new...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Join us for an evening with Mariko Tamaki, award-winning graphic novel and comics author, as she discusses feminism in the world of comics. Book signing to follow; light refreshments provided....

Cost: Free

Where:
Central Library
400 civic center
Tulsa, OK  74103
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa City-County Library
Telephone: 918-549-7323
Contact Name: Rebecca H
Website »

More information

Every Wednesday Live Event Trivia is at The Willows Family Ales - Show starts at 7 and is free to play! Movie scenes, Finish the Lyric, Classic Trivia, and more! The crew from T-Town Tacos will be...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Willows Family Ales
418 south peoria ave
tulsa, OK  74120
View map »


Sponsor: The Willows Family Ales
Telephone: (918) 895-6798
Contact Name: Julian Morgan
Website »

More information

Take a self-guided night hike to experience the sights and sounds along a nature trail through native prairie and forest. Wear comfortable walking shoes and bring a flashlight for this 1.5 mile...

Cost: $10 per person for members; $15 for non-members.

Where:
Tulsa Botanic Garden
3900 Tulsa Botanic Drive
Tulsa, OK  74127
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Botanic Garden
Telephone: 918-289-0330
Contact Name: Lori Hutson
Website »

More information

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Looking for something for your kids to do while you go to work this Spring Break?  Spotlight Theatre is offering this acting class taught by Crayons Improv.  Crayons will lead your...

Cost: 175

Where:
Spotlight Theatre
1381 Riverside Drive
Tulsa, OK  74127
View map »


Sponsor: Crayons Improv
Telephone: 918-557-5616
Contact Name: Nicole
Website »

More information

Mothers of Preschoolers (and preschool means prior to school, ages 6 weeks to 5 years old). MOPS warmly welcomes any mom that has at least one child age 6 weeks to 5 years old. By joining MOPS, you...

Cost: Free

Where:
Eastwood Baptist Church
948 S 91st E Ave
Tulsa, OK  74112
View map »


Sponsor: Eastwood Baptist Church
Telephone: 918-836-8686
Contact Name: Shirley Pittenger
Website »

More information

As Lakota artist Oscar Howe wrote in 1958, “There is much more to Indian art than pretty, stylized pictures.” This exhibition highlights this depth and the 20th century American masters who...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Men and women from across the American West played critical roles — both “over there” and on the home front — in helping the Allies win World War I. The American Expeditionary Force (AEF)...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Few animals conjure the power and symbolic presence of the North American bison. Whether painted on a tipi or an artist’s canvas, minted on a nickel, or seen grazing in Yellowstone National Park,...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

The Museum’s Dickinson Research Center is home to more than 700,000 photographs, 44,000 books, and perhaps unexpectedly, at least 1,000 horses. Meet some of the herd in Horseplay, the new...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

It's our FIRST LATE NIGHT of 2019!   Join Garden CEO Dr. Todd Lasseigne for a walk in the Garden to see what spring bulbs are blossoming and learn more about what goes into one of the largest...

Cost: FREE for Garden members; $8 for ages 13+; $4 for ages 3–12; 2 & under are free.

Where:
Tulsa Botanic Garden
3900 Tulsa Botanic Drive
Tulsa, OK  74127
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Botanic Garden
Telephone: 918-289-0330
Contact Name: Lori Hutson
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Looking for something for your kids to do while you go to work this Spring Break?  Spotlight Theatre is offering this acting class taught by Crayons Improv.  Crayons will lead your...

Cost: 175

Where:
Spotlight Theatre
1381 Riverside Drive
Tulsa, OK  74127
View map »


Sponsor: Crayons Improv
Telephone: 918-557-5616
Contact Name: Nicole
Website »

More information

The Museum’s Dickinson Research Center is home to more than 700,000 photographs, 44,000 books, and perhaps unexpectedly, at least 1,000 horses. Meet some of the herd in Horseplay, the new...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Men and women from across the American West played critical roles — both “over there” and on the home front — in helping the Allies win World War I. The American Expeditionary Force (AEF)...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Few animals conjure the power and symbolic presence of the North American bison. Whether painted on a tipi or an artist’s canvas, minted on a nickel, or seen grazing in Yellowstone National Park,...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

As Lakota artist Oscar Howe wrote in 1958, “There is much more to Indian art than pretty, stylized pictures.” This exhibition highlights this depth and the 20th century American masters who...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

 It's baseball time in Tulsa! Come and support the Golden Eagles on their road to the NCAA 2019 championship. All children ages 13 and under, accompanied by an adult, will be allowed in to all...

Cost: 7-14

Where:
J.L. JOHNSON STADIUM
7777 S Lewis Ave
Tulsa, OK  74137
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

The Orbit Initiative, produced by The Tulsa Performing Arts Center and Trust, resumes its FREE community satellite adventures at seven local community centers this Saturday, January 12th, and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Various
Various
Tulsa, OK  Various
View map »


Sponsor: The Tulsa Performing Arts Center and Trust
Telephone: 918-596-7119
Contact Name: Jeremy Stevens
Website »

More information

The Museum’s Dickinson Research Center is home to more than 700,000 photographs, 44,000 books, and perhaps unexpectedly, at least 1,000 horses. Meet some of the herd in Horseplay, the new...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Men and women from across the American West played critical roles — both “over there” and on the home front — in helping the Allies win World War I. The American Expeditionary Force (AEF)...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

Few animals conjure the power and symbolic presence of the North American bison. Whether painted on a tipi or an artist’s canvas, minted on a nickel, or seen grazing in Yellowstone National Park,...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

As Lakota artist Oscar Howe wrote in 1958, “There is much more to Indian art than pretty, stylized pictures.” This exhibition highlights this depth and the 20th century American masters who...

Cost: $12.50 adult entry

Where:
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
1700 NE 63rd Street
Oklahoma City, OK  73111
View map »

More information

We are hosting a traditional Wild Onion Dinner as a fundraiser this Saturday Mar 23rd.Menu: wild onions (locally harvested & cooked with eggs), fry bread, fried chicken, beans, potatoes, salt...

Cost: $10

Where:
Yuchi House
1010 S. Main St.
Sapulpa, OK  74066
View map »


Sponsor: Yuchi Language Project
Website »

More information

America’s LARGEST interactive comedy murder mystery dinner show is now playing at the Hilton Garden Inn Tulsa Broken Arrow! At The Dinner Detective, you’ll tackle a challenging crime while you...

Cost: 59.95

Where:
Hilton Garden Inn Tulsa- Broken Arrow
420 W Albany St.
Broken Arrow, OK  74012
View map »


Telephone: 866-496-0535
Contact Name: The Dinner Detective
Website »

More information

 It's baseball time in Tulsa! Come and support the Golden Eagles on their road to the NCAA 2019 championship. All children ages 13 and under, accompanied by an adult, will be allowed in to all...

Cost: 7-14

Where:
J.L. JOHNSON STADIUM
7777 S Lewis Ave
Tulsa, OK  74137
View map »


Website »

More information

The 28th annual Sip for Sight Grand Tasting will be on Saturday, March 23, 2019 at the Renaissance Tulsa Hotel and Convention Center. Your admission lets you taste more than 70 wines, sample beer...

Cost: $85

Where:
Renaissance Hotel and Convention Center
6808 S 107th E Ave
Tulsa, OK  74133
View map »


Sponsor: Vizavance
Telephone: 918-496-3484
Contact Name: Brandon Miller
Website »

More information

Internationally acclaimed pianist Daniel Epstein comes to Bartlesville for the first time, anchoring this stirring concert with Rachmaninoff’s soaring Piano Concerto No. 2. This veteran...

Cost: $22-$44

Where:
Bartlesville Community Center
300 S.E. Adams Blvd.
Bartlesville, OK  74003
View map »


Sponsor: Bartlesville Symphony Orchestra
Telephone: 918-366-7717
Contact Name: Molly Collins
Website »

More information

Welcome to the happy-shining, phoenix-rising, reunited world of Classic Smash Mouth in 2018. For the first time in nearly a decade, all five members of what is widely-considered the...

Cost: $50, $75, $100

Where:
Osage Casino's Skyline Event Center
Tulsa, OK

More information

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