On the Fly
A new venue brings all-ages shows to the local music scene.
With a name change and new owners, the site formerly known as Club Pure, aka U.V., aka Ministry of Sound, has shifted the center of Tulsa’s musical universe a few blocks to the east.
The new incarnation, The Fly Trap Music Hall, 514 E. Second St., has been taken over by Donnie Rich and Jake Crandall.
The spacious yet intimate room can hold 1,445 people, but that does not take into account the huge balcony above. Just under the Cain’s Ballroom’s capacity, The Flytrap’s dimensions keep the crowd close.
“What I like about it,” Crandall says, “is how you cannot be more than about 160 feet away from center stage no matter where you are in this place.”
With a new 56-channel soundboard (“one of the biggest in town,” Crandall says), CO2 cooling system (during sweltering summer shows, they can drop the temperature 20 degrees in 20 seconds — that’s right, I said seconds) and five multimedia screens, it’s easy to see why Rich and Crandall are excited.
But Rich’s enthusiasm is effusive when discussing the more personal aspects of The Flytrap.
“My favorite thing about it is we will not have to go with one demographic, ever,” he says. “We can do the tribute to The Beatles, then have Tone-Loc, then have David Allan Coe.
“We also want to get people (bands) in Tulsa that have never seen Tulsa or played a room in Tulsa. Because the Cain’s is such a big room and every place else is too small.”
Crandall says this is only the beginning of bigger and more diverse events.
“The parking lot alone will hold 6,000 people,” he says. “We could easily do a 12,000-person festival.
“We’re looking to book up-and-comers, currents and legendary acts.”
But the most drastic change to this notorious property is the accessibility for the entire family to enjoy music together.
“Downtown is cleaning up real well, but it’s still not becoming kid friendly,” Rich says. “For the first time in this room, parents were letting their 8-year-olds run around. I don’t think this room has ever seen that. We will be family oriented.
“I have got my kids up here,” he adds as his daughter naps on the empty stage. “I don’t want to have to worry about my kids and where they are.”
Rich and Crandall’s goal of bringing more live music to more people also includes economics — they plan to keep every ticket under $30.