Brandy McDonnell
Features Entertainment Reporter

Brandy McDonnell, also known by her initials BAM, writes stories and reviews on movies, music, the arts and other aspects of entertainment. She is NewsOK’s top blogger: Her 4-year-old entertainment news blog, BAM’s Blog, has notched more than 1 million page views a year for the past two years. Raised on a crop and cattle farm near Lindsay, McDonnell started her journalism career in seventh grade, when she was elected reporter for her school’s 4-H Club. Taking her duties seriously, she began submitting stories to The Lindsay News and worked for the local weekly through high school. An Oklahoma State University graduate, she will celebrate her 10th anniversary at The Oklahoman in May 2012.


  • Primus taps 'Pure Imagination' with 'Chocolate Factory' tour

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Published: Mon, May 4, 2015

    The experimental rockers are touring in support of their new album “Primus & the Chocolate Factory,” a “funhouse mirror” album that covers the soundtrack to the 1971 movie “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory.”

  • Red Dirt Relief Fund helps Oklahoma music people in times of need

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Published: Mon, Apr 27, 2015

    Modeled on the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences’ MusiCares Foundation, the Red Dirt Relief Fund provides an emergency safety net for Oklahomans in the music business facing financial, medical or personal hardships. Operated by an all-volunteer board, the fund has given about $24,800 in grants since 2012.

  • Country singer Jimmy Wayne tells his painful story to help foster children

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Published: Mon, Apr 27, 2015

    Released last fall, Wayne’s autobiography “Walk to Beautiful” details his turbulent and tragic childhood with an abusive, bipolar mother and a series of violent stepfathers as well as the saving grace he found in the elderly couple who took him in as homeless teen. He will perform Thursday at “Songs & Stories for Oklahoma’s Kids,” presented by Deaconess Pregnancy & Adoption Services, an organization he’s worked with before.

  • Bob Childers' Gypsy Cafe songwriter festival will benefit Red Dirt Relief Fund in Oklahoma

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Published: Mon, Apr 27, 2015

    The 2015 Bob Childers’ Gypsy Cafe will bring together 55 Oklahoma singer-songwriters for a series of acoustic song swaps Wednesday at three Stillwater venues.

  • The 50th Academy of Country Music Awards

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Updated: Mon, Apr 20, 2015

    See what The Oklahoman's Entertainment Writer Brandy McDonnell had to say about the 50th ACM Awards.

  • Miranda Lambert wins big at 50th ACM Awards

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Published: Mon, Apr 20, 2015

    Top Oklahoma superstars received Milestone Awards, and Troy Aikman and Alan Jackson marked the 20th anniversary of the Murrah Building bombing on the 50th Academy of Country Music Awards Sunday night.

  • Oklahoma City Festival of the Arts mixes familiar favorites with a few new offerings

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Published: Sun, Apr 19, 2015

    The 49th annual festival is set for 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. April 26 at its longtime home at the Festival Plaza, on Hudson Avenue and at the Myriad Botanical Gardens.

  • Excitement greets Oklahoma City Festival of the Arts in final year at Myriad Gardens

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Published: Fri, Apr 17, 2015

    With Oklahoma City’s downtown development boom, the Festival of the Arts will move in 2016 to its original home in Civic Center Park. In the meantime, organizers are planning an eclectic array of visual, performing and culinary arts for this year’s final festival in and around the Myriad Botanical Gardens. The 49th annual festival is set for Tuesday through April 26 at Festival Plaza, on Hudson Avenue and at the Myriad Botanical Gardens.

  • Granville Community Music School changes lives for small change

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Published: Mon, Apr 13, 2015

    A program of the Opry Heritage Foundation of Oklahoma, Granville Community School of Music offers one-on-one and small group music lessons for just 50 cents a lesson to children who qualify for free and reduced lunches.

  • Oklahoma City Ballet dances to Frank Sinatra, Patsy Cline and Moby in season closer

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Published: Sun, Apr 12, 2015

    Oklahoma City Ballet will close its 2014-15 season with “Nine Sinatra Songs: A Triple Bill,” Friday through April 19 at the Civic Center Music Hall.

  • ACM@UCO expands its annual student showcase to include more Oklahoma talent

    By Brandy McDonnell, BAM | Published: Fri, Apr 10, 2015

    Friday’s ACM@UCO Metro Music Fest will include more than 60 student bands from the Academy of Contemporary Music at the University of Central Oklahoma along with headliners BRONCHO, John Fullbright, Horse Thief, Shiny Toy Guns, Jabee, Kevin and Dustin Welch and Stardeath and White Dwarfs.

  • Oklahoma singer is raising his 'Voice' as reality show goes live

    By Brandy McDonnell, BAM | Published: Fri, Apr 3, 2015

    Bixby country crooner Corey Kent White, a member of Blake Shelton’s team on “The Voice,” delivered a powerhouse performance in honor of his late grandfather last week during the TV singing contest’s prerecorded knockout rounds, earning a spot in the Season 8 live playoffs, which begin Monday on NBC.

  • Merle Haggard shines on with Oklahoma benefit concert

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Published: Mon, Mar 30, 2015

    On Thursday, the hard-touring “Okie from Muskogee” singer-songwriter will begin a run of three Oklahoma performances with a fundraising show for the innovative program S.H.I.N.E. and its nonprofit foundation.

  • Constantly evolving and taking chances, Mary Chapin Carpenter brings acoustic tour to Oklahoma City

    By Brandy McDonnell, BAM | Published: Fri, Mar 27, 2015

    Five-time Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Mary Chapin Carpenter is bringing her spring acoustic tour to Oklahoma City Community College Monday for a show at the Visual and Performing Arts Center Theater.

  • Oklahoma native Charlie Wilson goes big and comes home with new arena tour

    By Brandy McDonnell, BAM | Published: Fri, Mar 20, 2015

    At 62, Oklahoma native and former Gap Band frontman Charlie Wilson is bringing his “Forever Charlie Tour” in support of his new album to Chesapeake Energy Arena Saturday night.

  • Miranda Lambert grows Oklahoma roots, lets them show on 'Platinum'

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Published: Fri, Mar 6, 2015

    The Texas native, who has called Tishomingo home for about eight years, is bringing her “Certified Platinum Tour” in support of her Grammy-winning album “Platinum” to Chesapeake Energy Arena Friday night.

  • Got 'Momentum'? Exhibition gives young Oklahoma artists opportunities

    By Brandy McDonnell, BAM | Published: Fri, Mar 6, 2015

    The Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition’s “Momentum: Art Doesn’t Stand Still,” an annual exhibition that showcases the work of Oklahoma artists 30 and younger, is opening with two nights of festivities Friday and Saturday, plus free gallery hours Sunday and Monday.

  • Broadway star Patti LuPone brings show-stopping show tunes to Oklahoma City concert

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Published: Sun, Mar 1, 2015

    Two-time Tony winner and two-time Grammy winner Patti LuPone will perform her concert “Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda, ... Played That Part” Saturday at Oklahoma City Community College’s Visual and Performing Arts Center Theater. The show is a fundraiser for Oklahoma City Repertory Theatre, a nonprofit, professional regional theater.

  • Album review: Charlie Wilson, 'Forever Charlie' (RCA)

    Published: Fri, Feb 20, 2015

    Tulsa native Charlie Wilson recently released his latest solo album, “Forever Charlie,” and he’s still giving both new and longtime fans plenty to love even after celebrating his 62nd birthday last month. The former frontman of the iconic funk trio The GAP Band specializes these days in sweet and sexy R&B ballads delivered in a voice that is still warm and smooth as velvet.

  • New Oklahoma City University orchestral suite reopens 'Windows to the West'

    By Brandy McDonnell, Features Writer | Updated: Thu, Feb 19, 2015

    Friday night, the Oklahoma City University Symphony Orchestra will perform the world premiere of OCU composer in residence Edward Knight’s orchestra suite “Windows to the West,” which is inspired by the five massive triptychs of the same name at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. As part of the museum’s 50th birthday celebration, the world premiere concert will take place beneath the triptychs, which were painted by the late, great landscape painter Wilson Hurley, a Tulsa native.




Brandy McDonnell Today at 6:28 PM UPDATED: deadCenter Film Festival announces 15th anniversary lineup LINK
Brandy McDonnell Today at 5:31 PM Lots of fun chatting with John Flansburgh of @tmbg today before the band's 5/15 @DiamondBallroom show. #storycomingsoon
Brandy McDonnell Today at 2:04 PM deadCenter Film Festival announces 15th anniversary lineup LINK
Brandy McDonnell Today at 10:40 AM Interview: Primus' Tim 'Herb' Alexander talks 'Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory' album and tour before Mond... LINK
Brandy McDonnell Today at 10:01 AM RT @onlygators: Donovan on having a change of heart: "I don't think so. No. I know I have a history of that, but no, I feel very comfortabl…
Brandy McDonnell Today at 10:01 AM RT @onlygators: Will #Gators basketball be good going forward? "I have confidence in Jeremy [Foley]," Donovan replies.
Brandy McDonnell Today at 10:01 AM RT @onlygators: Donovan said he spoke w/ all 4 #Gators signees. "All the kids were great. They were first-class ... very supportive and pos…
Brandy McDonnell Today at 10:00 AM RT @onlygators: Donovan said hardest part of leaving #Gators was the timing as most players were home after exams. Only met w/ Finney-Smith…
Brandy McDonnell Today at 10:00 AM RT @onlygators: Billy Donovan in gray and black, not orange and blue. LINK
Brandy McDonnell Today at 10:00 AM RT @onlygators: "In my opinion, Florida's been nothing but perfect." Donovan says nothing wrong w/ #Gators bball caused him to leave.
Brandy McDonnell Today at 10:00 AM RT @onlygators: "I never looked at it like it was 'time to go,'" Donovan says. "I was not just going to pick up & walk out of Florida" unle…
Brandy McDonnell Today at 10:00 AM RT @onlygators: "[Jeremy Foley] changed my life in a lot of ways and I'll always be grateful for him and for Florida." -- Billy Donovan, #G…
Brandy McDonnell Today at 10:00 AM RT @onlygators: "What I don't want to see happen is what's been built over 19 years take a step back. ... I want to see this be sustained" …
Brandy McDonnell Today at 10:00 AM RT @onlygators: Donovan says he has made no decisions about who he will be hiring as assistant coaches w/ the #Thunder, #Gators assistants …
Brandy McDonnell Today at 9:59 AM RT @onlygators: "People will always look at W/L, I hope ... I was able to make an impact, impact people's lives, bring value to people, hel…
Brandy McDonnell Today at 9:59 AM RT @onlygators: "I hope I made Florida better as an institution," Donovan says. He hopes he brought value to #Gators, changed the culture, …
Brandy McDonnell Today at 9:59 AM RT @onlygators: "I didn't go into any of this stuff with the idea that I wanted to leave. ... I felt like in 19 years I've touched" every a…
Brandy McDonnell Today at 9:58 AM Happy #StarWarsDay! #MayThe4thBeWithYou LINK
Brandy McDonnell Today at 9:52 AM Interview: @primus' @timalexander talks 'Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory' album & tour before Monday's OKC show LINK
Brandy McDonnell Today at 9:51 AM What to do in Oklahoma on May 4, 2015: See mosaics by Frederick artist Jenny Perry at the state Capitol LINK

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