Rocking reviews

Two Tulsa musicians have released new albums with diverse tunes that will undoubtedly stick with listeners.



JD McPherson, "Let the Good Times Roll"

JD McPherson burst onto the national music scene with his 2010 album “Signs & Signifiers,” a blistering set of instantly catchy, critically lauded roots rock that earned him a much-deserved “Artist to Watch” title from Rolling Stone magazine. 

The Broken Arrow resident is certainly not suffering from the dreaded “sophomore slump” with his follow-up, “Let the Good Times Roll.” 

In fact, he delivers a collection of retro-tinged songs every bit as compelling as his debut. The word “tinged” is important here, because though McPherson’s style is still heavily steeped in the ragged, warm, haunted sounds of dusty Sun/Stax/Chess 45s, his new tracks also manage to meld a subtle, modern edge into the mix. 

The album’s stellar production brings a spaciousness and muscular bite to McPherson’s soulful howl, tightly churning rhythm section and textured guitar work. 

Songs like the gorgeous “Precious” and “Bridgebuilder” (which was co-written with Black Keys frontman Dan Auerbach and beautifully channels The Flamingos’ “I Only Have Eyes for You”) benefit greatly from this nuanced treatment. 

The rockers on this record — and there are many — jump through the speakers and slap you across the face ... in the best possible way. McPherson knows how to craft a catchy three-minute retro rave-up, most notably on songs like “It’s All Over but the Shouting,” “It Shook Me Up” and the shuffling, instant-hit title track. 

However, “Head Over Heels” is a revelation, somehow managing to be equal parts modern rock and tremolo-drenched throwback guitar fest — a standout song nestled in the middle of a record full of fantastic music. 

“Let the Good Times Roll” is an absolute winner.

 

John Calvin Abney, “Better Luck”

Tulsan John Calvin Abney has spent years as a guitarist and touring band member for fellow Okie roots music and folk artists such as Samantha Crain, John Moreland and Kyle Reid. By his own admission, songwriting came to him “later than some.” He’s making up for that delay, however, with his debut full-length CD, “Better Luck.”

You’d never know Abney is a newcomer to the craft of composing smart, personal, often wryly pointed American indie folk-rock in the vein of Elliot Smith and Conor Oberst

His slightly weathered tenor vocals cut a lonely groove through 11 songs about loss, regret, burned bridges and yes, sometimes, love. 

While it’s true these topics are the traditional lyrical fodder of a multitude of singer-songwriters, Abney approaches his music with a fresh innocence and tuneful confidence that propels his melodies and delivers legitimate, heartfelt emotion.

Spare, economic production throughout “Better Luck” provides an airy sonic space for Abney’s mostly acoustic music. However, the occasional bite of overdrive on some vocals and/or guitar punctuates a few tracks, such as the darkly compelling “Cut the Rope” and the album’s brooding closer, “Dark Horse Army.”

On the opening track, “Stepladder,” Abney charms with rootsy upbeat swagger, while “I Can’t Choose,” gives the theme of debilitating indecision a deep, midtempo groove and a lilting backroads melody that sticks in your head. 

All in all, “Better Luck” may be a prophetic title for Abney’s career. A truly fine debut.

 


MAY’S best bets for live music

5/19 Mat Kearney, Cain’s Ballroom Pop songsmith Mat Kearney wrote and recorded much of his new CD, “Just Kids,” while touring in support of his last album, “Young Love.” Writing and recording in hotel rooms and studios from Los Angeles to Sweden, as well as his home studio in Nashville, Kearney self-produced a release that he says is “groovier than people would expect from me.” Doors open at 7 p.m. Judah & The Lion will open the show. 

5/19 Weird Al Yankovic, Brady Theater This is one of those times when a random Tuesday becomes the most entertaining night of the month. If you’re not popping it up this evening with Mr. Kearney (see above) you simply MUST be in attendance as Weird Al Yankovic — the grand master of all parody songs, strange accordion medleys and general oddness — takes the stage a few blocks away. He’s a national treasure of musical camp. Seriously. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.

 

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February 2019

Winter's Grace Publishing, of northeast Oklahoma, is holding its inaugural Dead of Winter Flash Fiction Contest. It opened January 1 and it closes February 28. It's open to all creative writers...

Cost: $15 per story

Where:
, OK


Sponsor: Winter's Grace Publishing
Telephone: 918-852-6311
Contact Name: C.D. Smart
Website »

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For decades social change activists have said, “If you want peace, work for justice.” But we also know that that working for justice evokes conflict. Working with conflict is...

Cost: Free

Where:
Peace Academy
4620 S Irvington Ave
Tulsa, OK  74135
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Sponsor: Oklahoma Center for Community and Justice
Telephone: 918-583-1361
Contact Name: Sandi Cox
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Clark Youth Theatre announces performances of As You Like It by William Shakespeare on February 1-2 and February 7-9 at 7:30 p.m. and February 3 and February 10 at 2 p.m. at the Henthorne...

Cost: $10-$13

Where:
Clark Youth Theatre - Henthorne PAC
4825 S. Quaker Ave
Tulsa, OK  74105
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Sponsor: Clark Youth Theatre, Incorporated
Telephone: 918-746-5065
Contact Name: Tammy Slack
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Clark Youth Theatre announces performances of As You Like It by William Shakespeare on February 1-2 and February 7-9 at 7:30 p.m. and February 3 and February 10 at 2 p.m. at the Henthorne...

Cost: $10-$13

Where:
Clark Youth Theatre - Henthorne PAC
4825 S. Quaker Ave
Tulsa, OK  74105
View map »


Sponsor: Clark Youth Theatre, Incorporated
Telephone: 918-746-5065
Contact Name: Tammy Slack
Website »

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BROKEN ARROW COMMUNITY PLAYHOUSE Presents “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged)[revised]” Tickets are on sale now at www.bacptheatre.com or Call our Box Office 918-258-0077...

Cost: $13-$18

Where:
Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
1800 S. Main St.
Broken Arrow, OK  74012
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Sponsor: Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
Telephone: 918-258-0077
Contact Name: Sherry Hacker
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Cost: $10.00

Where:
The Shrine
112 E 18th St
Tulsa, OK  74119
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Telephone: 539-215-1239
Contact Name: LaShanta Lewis

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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 »

More information

Winter's Grace Publishing, of northeast Oklahoma, is holding its inaugural Dead of Winter Flash Fiction Contest. It opened January 1 and it closes February 28. It's open to all creative writers...

Cost: $15 per story

Where:
, OK


Sponsor: Winter's Grace Publishing
Telephone: 918-852-6311
Contact Name: C.D. Smart
Website »

More information

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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So You Want to Make a Movie? Learn how to take your movie idea from conception to reality through hands-on guidance. The goal is to create a short digital video to be submitted to a local film...

Cost: $375

Where:
Ahha Tulsa
101 E. Archer St.
Tulsa, OK  74103
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Sponsor: Center for Poets and Writers at OSU-Tulsa
Website »

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BROKEN ARROW COMMUNITY PLAYHOUSE Presents “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged)[revised]” Tickets are on sale now at www.bacptheatre.com or Call our Box Office 918-258-0077...

Cost: $13-$18

Where:
Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
1800 S. Main St.
Broken Arrow, OK  74012
View map »


Sponsor: Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
Telephone: 918-258-0077
Contact Name: Sherry Hacker
Website »

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A celebration of the 2018 Tulsa Area United Way campaign and the many individuals and organizations that made it a success.

Cost: Free

Where:
Cox Business Center
100 Civic Center
Tulsa
Tulsa, OK  74103
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Area United Way
Telephone: 918-295-6601
Contact Name: Bonnie Rucker
Website »

More information

Winter's Grace Publishing, of northeast Oklahoma, is holding its inaugural Dead of Winter Flash Fiction Contest. It opened January 1 and it closes February 28. It's open to all creative writers...

Cost: $15 per story

Where:
, OK


Sponsor: Winter's Grace Publishing
Telephone: 918-852-6311
Contact Name: C.D. Smart
Website »

More information

Theme Imitation Imitation is a form of flattery. Learn how writers mimic themes, voice and tone – with one-on-one mentoring - to create your own unique piece of poetry. Instructor: Clemonce...

Cost: $300

Where:
Center for Poets and Writers at OSU-Tulsa
700 N. Greenwood Ave.
Tulsa, OK  74106
View map »


Sponsor: Center for Poets and Writers at OSU-Tulsa
Website »

More information

BROKEN ARROW COMMUNITY PLAYHOUSE Presents “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged)[revised]” Tickets are on sale now at www.bacptheatre.com or Call our Box Office 918-258-0077...

Cost: $13-$18

Where:
Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
1800 S. Main St.
Broken Arrow, OK  74012
View map »


Sponsor: Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
Telephone: 918-258-0077
Contact Name: Sherry Hacker
Website »

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TCC and the National Book Foundation present a panel of award winning authors from across the country who will discuss the importance of reading and writing as a means of exploring...

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 »

More information

Winter's Grace Publishing, of northeast Oklahoma, is holding its inaugural Dead of Winter Flash Fiction Contest. It opened January 1 and it closes February 28. It's open to all creative writers...

Cost: $15 per story

Where:
, OK


Sponsor: Winter's Grace Publishing
Telephone: 918-852-6311
Contact Name: C.D. Smart
Website »

More information

Enjoy lunch and a behind-the-scenes tour to learn how the Food Bank fights hunger in eastern Oklahoma by distributing the equivalent of 450,000 meals each week. You can help too. Food for...

Cost: No Cost

Where:
Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma
1304 N. Kenosha Ave.
Tulsa, OK  74106
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Sponsor: Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma
Telephone: 918-936-4551
Contact Name: Regan Leake
Website »

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This super special Galentine’s Day event will take place at the Mother Road Market, in their awesome classroom. Not only will we be making adorable unicorn ring holders (a foolproof project, with...

Cost: $30

Where:
Mother Road Market
1124 S LEWIS Ave
Tulsa, OK  74104
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Sponsor: Tiny Things by Bowen
Contact Name: Sarah Bowen
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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
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Sponsor: The Willows Family Ales
Telephone: (918) 895-6798
Contact Name: Julian Morgan
Website »

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BROKEN ARROW COMMUNITY PLAYHOUSE Presents “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged)[revised]” Tickets are on sale now at www.bacptheatre.com or Call our Box Office 918-258-0077...

Cost: $13-$18

Where:
Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
1800 S. Main St.
Broken Arrow, OK  74012
View map »


Sponsor: Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
Telephone: 918-258-0077
Contact Name: Sherry Hacker
Website »

More information

Show More...
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Winter's Grace Publishing, of northeast Oklahoma, is holding its inaugural Dead of Winter Flash Fiction Contest. It opened January 1 and it closes February 28. It's open to all creative writers...

Cost: $15 per story

Where:
, OK


Sponsor: Winter's Grace Publishing
Telephone: 918-852-6311
Contact Name: C.D. Smart
Website »

More information

Couples and singles are invited for a private happy hour with appetizers and drinks under the sea. Fall in love with the ocean by participating on an adult scavenger hunt that tours guests through...

Cost: $20

Where:
Oklahoma Aquarium
300 Aquarium Dr.
Jenks, OK  74037
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Telephone: 918-528-1507
Contact Name: Liz Medrano
Website »

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Borrowed Forms Learn to craft content regardless of the format. Turn your mortgage payoff letter into a personal essay about purchasing a home or an orthodontist report transformed into an...

Cost: $225

Where:
Center for Poets and Writers at OSU-Tulsa
700 N. Greenwood Ave.
Tulsa, OK  74106
View map »


Sponsor: Center for Poets and Writers at OSU-Tulsa
Website »

More information

BROKEN ARROW COMMUNITY PLAYHOUSE Presents “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged)[revised]” Tickets are on sale now at www.bacptheatre.com or Call our Box Office 918-258-0077...

Cost: $13-$18

Where:
Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
1800 S. Main St.
Broken Arrow, OK  74012
View map »


Sponsor: Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
Telephone: 918-258-0077
Contact Name: Sherry Hacker
Website »

More information

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Do you and your pup have "cabin fever"? Come out to the Botanic Garden during our "Dog Days of Winter" - Fridays and Saturdays during January and February only when four-legged...

Cost: Free for Garden members & their dogs. Admission + $4 per dog 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

More information

Two workshops will be provided on February 15th at the Brookside Library from 11:00-12:00 & 12:30-1:30 will be provided free of charge for caregivers who want to learn about special...

Cost: Free

Where:
Brookside Library
1207 E 45th Pl
Tulsa, OK  74105
View map »


Sponsor: Albert Schweitzer Fellowship & Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma
Telephone: 918-925-2138
Contact Name: Sarah Young

More information

Two workshops will be provided on February 15th at the Brookside Library from 11:00-12:00 & 12:30-1:30 will be provided free of charge for caregivers who want to learn about special education,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Brookside Library
1207 E 45th Pl
Tulsa, OK  74105
View map »


Sponsor: Albert Schweitzer Fellowship & Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma
Telephone: 918-925-2138
Contact Name: Sarah Young

More information

Winter's Grace Publishing, of northeast Oklahoma, is holding its inaugural Dead of Winter Flash Fiction Contest. It opened January 1 and it closes February 28. It's open to all creative writers...

Cost: $15 per story

Where:
, OK


Sponsor: Winter's Grace Publishing
Telephone: 918-852-6311
Contact Name: C.D. Smart
Website »

More information

Two workshops will be provided on February 15th at the Brookside Library from 11:00-12:00 & 12:30-1:30 will be provided free of charge for caregivers who want to learn about special education,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Brookside Library
1207 E 45th Pl
Tulsa, OK  74105
View map »


Sponsor: Albert Schweitzer Fellowship & Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma
Telephone: 918-925-2138
Contact Name: Sarah Young

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

Solo performance. Originally from the OKC area, Adrienne Gilley is a vocalist, guitar player, songwriter. Drawing from co-writers and influential mentors and supporters in the Tulsa music scene,...

Cost: Tipping encouraged

Where:
The Colony
2809 S. Harvard
Tulsa, OK  74114
View map »


Website »

More information

Clark Youth Theatre Presents The Penguin Project ® Seussical Kids! Clark Youth Theatre announces the fourth annual production of The Penguin Project®. Students with disabilities will perform...

Cost: $13, adults; $10, students, seniors and military

Where:
Cascia Hall Preparatory School
2520 S. Yorktown Ave.
Tulsa, OK  74114
View map »


Sponsor: Clark Youth Theatre
Telephone: (918) 596-1412
Contact Name: Erin Scarberry
Website »

More information

BROKEN ARROW COMMUNITY PLAYHOUSE Presents “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged)[revised]” Tickets are on sale now at www.bacptheatre.com or Call our Box Office 918-258-0077...

Cost: $13-$18

Where:
Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
1800 S. Main St.
Broken Arrow, OK  74012
View map »


Sponsor: Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
Telephone: 918-258-0077
Contact Name: Sherry Hacker
Website »

More information

Sunday in the Park with George follows painter Georges Seurat in the months leading up to the completion of his most famous painting, "A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte." Consumed...

Cost: $25.00 for adults, $22.50 for students & seniors with ID

Where:
Tulsa Performing Arts Center
110 E. 2nd St.
Tulsa, OK  74103
View map »


Sponsor: American Theatre Company
Telephone: (918) 747-9494
Contact Name: Meghan Hurley
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Do you and your pup have "cabin fever"? Come out to the Botanic Garden during our "Dog Days of Winter" - Fridays and Saturdays during January and February only when four-legged...

Cost: Free for Garden members & their dogs. Admission + $4 per dog 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

More information

Pain Management Class Non-medical Treatments for Pain Non-medical treatments may be used to treat chronic pain, along with pain medicines. They might also be used alone for mild pain or...

Cost: Free and Open to the Public

Where:
Glenpool Library
730 E. 141st Street
Glenpool, OK  74033
View map »


Sponsor: Success Skills
Telephone: 405-401-3519
Contact Name: Ron Watkins

More information

Winter's Grace Publishing, of northeast Oklahoma, is holding its inaugural Dead of Winter Flash Fiction Contest. It opened January 1 and it closes February 28. It's open to all creative writers...

Cost: $15 per story

Where:
, OK


Sponsor: Winter's Grace Publishing
Telephone: 918-852-6311
Contact Name: C.D. Smart
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

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

$120 per couple and $65 for single ticket; Saturday, February 16, 2019; Venue Mike Fretz Event Center; Advance reservations required!   Slip into your cocktail attire for a night of food, music,...

Cost: $120.00

Where:
Mike Fretz Event Center
11545 E 43rd St
Tulsa, OK  74146
View map »

More information

BROKEN ARROW COMMUNITY PLAYHOUSE Presents “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged)[revised]” Tickets are on sale now at www.bacptheatre.com or Call our Box Office 918-258-0077...

Cost: $13-$18

Where:
Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
1800 S. Main St.
Broken Arrow, OK  74012
View map »


Sponsor: Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
Telephone: 918-258-0077
Contact Name: Sherry Hacker
Website »

More information

Beyond music and lyrics, an album bottles personal milestones, moments, and memories for the artist and the audience. When songs connect, those resonances only echo louder as each decade passes....

Cost: $50, $75, $100

Where:
Osage Casino
951 West 36th St N
Tulsa, OK
View map »

More information

Join us again for another evening of fun and laughter with Tulsa's Great Improvisational Comedy Show, “The Spontaniacs!”  Song, dance, and a whole lotta’ silly are...

Cost: $8.00

Where:
pH Community House
306 S Phoenix Ave
Tulsa, OK  74127
View map »


Sponsor: The Spontaniacs!
Telephone: 918-521-9345
Contact Name: Eric Peterson
Website »

More information

Sunday in the Park with George follows painter Georges Seurat in the months leading up to the completion of his most famous painting, "A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte." Consumed...

Cost: $25.00 for adults, $22.50 for students & seniors with ID

Where:
Tulsa Performing Arts Center
110 E. 2nd St.
Tulsa, OK  74103
View map »


Sponsor: American Theatre Company
Telephone: (918) 747-9494
Contact Name: Meghan Hurley
Website »

More information

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