About 60,000 fans are expected to converge on downtown Oklahoma City this weekend to hear a top-notch lineup of national and regional country acts today and Saturday on the OKCFest main stage west of the Chesapeake Energy Arena and just south of the Myriad Gardens in the old Ford dealership parking lot.
Plus, a diverse slate of Oklahoma talents playing on an array of free stages in the Myriad Botanical Gardens will take OKCFest beyond country and into rock, folk, bluegrass, gospel, jazz and rock en Espanol Friday, Saturday and into Sunday.
“People are looking to come to downtown Oklahoma City regardless of what’s going on,” OKC Mayor Mick Cornett told The Oklahoman when OKCFest was announced back in spring. “You put this event in downtown Oklahoma City, and it really complements what our city has to offer.”
To read my full OKC Fest preview story, complete with interviews with Kix Brooks, Randy Rogers and Kaitlin Butts, click here.
For tickets and information, go to www.okcfest.com.
OKC Fest MAIN STAGE LINEUP
Dierks Bentley – 10:00pm
Seven albums into one of country music’s most respected and most unpredictable careers, award-winning singer/songwriter Dierks Bentley continues to grow. His latest evolution comes in the form of RISER, a project due early 2014 that stands as his most personal to date.
Merle Haggard – 8:30pm
The word “legend” usually makes an appearance at some point when discussing Merle Haggard. It’s an acknowledgment of his artistry and his standing as “the poet of the common man.” It’s a tribute to his incredible commercial success and to the lasting mark he has made, not just on country music, but on American music as a whole.
Josh Abbott Band – 7:00pm
Favoring a style of country music that owes as much to the band’s native Texas as the genre’s Nashville headquarters, the Josh Abbott Band began taking shape in 2004. Inspired by the rough-and-tumble “Texas country” bands that regularly played the venue, he started writing his own songs and playing them at local bars, using members of his fraternity to form an early incarnation of the Josh Abbott Band.
Casey Donahew Band – 5:45pm
The Burleson native, (with the help of his wife Melinda,) has painstakingly carved out an impressive niche for himself on the country music scene over the past decade, attracting a solid base of loyal fans who flock to his legendary live shows. Building his career from the ground up one show at a time, he’s managed to perform on countless stages night after night in front of thousands, topped the Texas music charts several times, released four albums independently to critical acclaim, and forged a path all his own through the music scene without the aid or muscle of a major record label or power-suit management company.
Jaida Dreyer – 5:00pm
Jaida Dreyer didn’t grow up intending to become a country music artist, but it’s clear she was meant to be all along. Her unmistakable voice, bubbly personality, and eclectic, insightful songwriting scored her a publishing deal with Grammy award-winning producer Byron Gallimore (Faith Hill, Tim McGraw, Sugarland). Recently, Dreyer has garnered three song cuts in the ABC hit television series, Nashville, including “This Town,” which charted Top 10 on the iTunes Country singles chart.
Lady Antebellum – 10:00pm
Since its 2006 inception, the group had risen quickly to become country music’s most influential current group. Lady A won the Vocal Group of the Year honor from both the Country Music Association and from the Academy of Country Music three times in a row. Eight of the band’s singles went gold, with four – “American Honey,” “Need You Now,” “Just A Kiss” and “I Run To You” – surpassing the platinum mark. “Need You Now” went on to sell over seven million downloads, according to the RIAA. Additionally, “Need You Now” claimed five of the trio’s seven career Grammy wins in 2011, including the all-genre Record and Song of the Year.
Scotty McCreery – 8:30pm
Earning both a platinum and gold album before turning 20, Scotty McCreery is poised to become country’s newest superstar. His deep voice and an irresistible sound create the perfect blend of contemporary and traditional country. With over 150 live shows under his belt across the US, Canada and the Philippines, McCreery has become a fan favorite appealing to all ages. After winning Season Ten of American Idol, Scotty immediately established himself as one of the hottest new stars in country music.
Randy Rogers Band – 7:00pm
When the Randy Rogers Band’s last project debuted as the most-downloaded country album on iTunes, plenty of the industry “insiders” on Music Row were left scratching their heads: Who are these guys? The Nashville elite may not have known about the five-piece band, but much of America already did. The Randy Rogers Band built its audience by combining forces: It’s a dynamic live act centered around songs that fit the rowdy, party vibe of the concert circuit, but their songs also say something.
Kix Brooks – 5:45pm
After spending 20 years as one half of the highest selling duo in the history of Country music, Brooks & Dunn, Kix Brooks launched his solo music career in 2012. His debut Arista Nashville solo single “New To This Town” is currently climbing the Country radio charts. Brooks is also the host of “American Country Countdown” which is an internationally syndicated radio program that counts down the top 40 country songs of the previous week, and owner of Arrington Vineyards, located south of Nashville, TN.
Lucas Hoge – 5:00pm
Lucas Hoge’s left his humble hometown of Hubbell, Nebraska, with music on his mind. He is a rising country artist and currently the star of Animal Planet’s 8 part series “Last Chance Highway”. Lucas also penned and performs the shows theme song, now available on iTunes.
OKC Fest FREE STAGES LINEUP
Plaza By Cox
Camille Harp 4:30 PM
John Moreland 5:30 PM
Byron Berline Band 6:30 PM
Plaza By Cox
Jessey General Thompson 12:30 PM
Josh Hawkins 1:30 PM
Kaitlin Butts 2:30 PM
Chase Kerby 3:30 PM
Mike Hosty 4:30 PM
Green Corn Revival 5:30 PM
Graham Colton 6:30 PM
Great Lawn By ACM@UCO
Air Line Road 12:00 PM
The Broken Okies 1:00 PM
Jennifay Joy & Diamond Grit 2:00 PM
Mountain Smoke 3:00 PM
Carter Beckworth 4:00 PM
The Hideouts 5:00 PM
Aaron Pierce 6:00 PM
Wanda Jackson 7:00 PM
Rotunda By ITC Holdings
Travis Wackerly & Honey Creek Pass 2:00 PM
Bonham Family Revue 3:00 PM
Blocker Stephens Band 4:00 PM
High Ground Bluegrass Band 5:00 PM
Wiggle Out Loud 12:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Plaza By Cox
Deep Deuce Celebration Choir 11:30 am
Carl Moore & The Pocket Doctors 1:00 pm
Walter Taylor III / Taylor Made Jazz 2:00 pm
Stage En Español
The Argots 12:00 pm
Sylvia y su Grupo Escándalo 12:45 pm
Salsa Shakers 1:45 pm
El Reten de Nuevo Leon 2:45 pm
La Sonora Explosiva 4:00 pm