Esteemed Oklahoma City listening room the Blue Door is hosting its sixth annual tribute to Bob Childers, the singer-songwriter known as “the godfather of red dirt music,” at 8 tonight.
“Every year we gather to honor our friend and songwriter Bob Childers. To say he was important to the development of ‘red dirt’ music is really an understatement,” Blue Door proprietor Greg Johnson wrote in an email.
“Bob’s legend began as his songs, popularized by Greg Jacobs, Jimmy LaFave,Tom Skinner and later the Red Dirt Rangers, began to make their way around campgrounds and coffee houses and bars all over Oklahoma and elsewhere. Jason Boland and Stoney LaRue spread the word even more and now a new generation of Okie songwriters look to Bob for inspiration. If not for Jacobs, LaFave and Skinner, we would not be talking about Bob today. They really were his vehicle and while we all loved Bob’s shows, his greatness would never be realized if his songs had not be recorded by others.”
Childers released those songs on seven compact discs, including the seminal Red Dirt classic, “Nothin’ More Natural,” featuring “Woody’s Road,” his most famous song. He died in 2008 at the age of 61.
In the spirit of Childers’ easygoing ways, Johnson said he has no idea who is coming out this year, as he is leaving the event open. Artists are encouraged to sign up at the counter and play songs – they can do as many as four each, depending on time.
“Yes, this is about as organized as a Democratic convention, so we shall see who comes out,” Greg says in his email. “But I expect the Red Dirt Rangers, Miss Brown To You, Bob Williams, Terry “Buffalo” Ware, Buffalo Rogers, T.Z. Wright, Tom Skinner, Monica Taylor and I hope Greg Jacobs and Susan Herndon, but since they are playing (the Blue Door) this Thursday maybe they will wait and honor Bob in their own way this week.
Doors open at 7:30 tonight at the Blue Door, 2805 N McKinley. Tickets are $20.
For more information, go to www.bluedoorokc.com.