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Carrie Nation sets local performance

One of the great hard-to-define music acts around is kicking off its I-35 Tour with a stop in its second home in the cradle of the Wichita Mountains.

Carrie Nation & The Speakeasy will be bringing its road show to the Park Tavern in Medicine Park March 3 for a "live/one night only" performance beginning at 8 p.m. Hailing from Wichita, Kan., the eclectic 6-piece group  composed of mostly acoustic instruments with a minimal drum kit, banjo, upright bass, and mandolin along with horns, an electric banjo, and washboard  adds up to a unique sound that's beyond bluegrass and rolls smoother than rock. 

For a taste of its, bluegrass-meets-punk rock musings: • Carrie Nation & The Speakeasy  "End Up Drinking Beer"

Calling itself a "brass 'n grass" sextet, The Speakeasy has been packing crowds in for the past 10 years. It's earned its stripes appearing  and stealing the spotlight  at many a Medicine Park festival. As a matter of fact, I believe a Dwight Cope original guitar is among the band's instrumental repertoire. 

The band is tight knit and features brothers Jarrod and Zachary Starling, the band's acoustic guitar and drums/washboard, respectively; Dallin Bulkley, standup bass; Garrett Briggeman, five-string banjo; Josue Estrada, trumpet; and Tyler Grubb on double solo duties, playing both mandolin and trombone. 

With a pair of original LPs, a self-titled number from 2010 and 2013's "Hatchetations," the band has built an original sound that's added to its reputation. With a couple of hundred shows or more a year, its following is sincere and loyal. These are great makings for a new album planned for release this year. 

Here's a great example of what makes it a one-of-a-kind experience: • Carrie Nation & The Speakeasy  "Autumn Wind"

The March 3 show kicks off the band's I-35 Tour that works north from Laredo, Texas, up to a big finish in Duluth, Minn. 

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If you're in the mood for a laid-back and entertaining evening down Cotton County way, then I have a show for you.

Beginning at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, the House Show with Bernardus and Andrew the Poet! will be at the house of Andrew (Laramie Brasier), 229 W. Wyoming in Walters.

"The show will be free, but we are taking donations (like $5 would be super cool) plus buy merchandise to support Bernardus while they're on tour," Brasier said. "Doing these small tours can get expensive so let's support artists."

Bernardus  Ben Kramer, vocals/guitar; Jake Kramer, violin/mandolin/guitar/vocals; Adam Kovar, drums; Matt Cornell, bass; and Christian Hale-Keys, vocals  is an indie rock goldmine hailing from Lincoln, Neb. It's doing an acoustic tour and it's pretty cool they're doing such an intimate show nearby. Check out the year-old band's first video: • Bernardus  "Asleep"

Brasier asks that there not be any drugs or underage drinking and, if you smoke, take it outside. And respect the host's house and his dog and ferret.

To keep up with either artist: and

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If you're itching for an evening of "wild prairie mountain honky tonk folk rock" with a twist, head on out to the Bullpen Saturday night and get your fix with Just Strangers and Rodney Whaley. The show will begin at 9 p.m. at the club, 11822 NW McClung Road.

Some shining lights on the Southwest Oklahoma music scene, Just Strangers  Zach and Sarah Holiday  and Whaley have been making some beautiful music. This is one of my favorite performances from 2016: • Rodney Whaley  "Disclaimer"

The Holidays recently returned to Medicine Park after living in Virginia for a while. When they left, they were Not Brothers and, although Just Strangers upon return, it feels like part of the family have come home. They describe what they do as writing "songs about the highway and worn hearts, mornings bright and early and the late night derelicts, train songs, songs about whiskey and wild women, songs about abandon and holding, songs about small town folk and homespun, heart-driven, city rambling, some 1970s yellowed Polaroid, having nothing and wanting it all, maybe a tavern or a truck stop, something about bus stations and bowling alleys and discovering a jukebox." That's beautiful.

Check out a new video they've posted; it's a peach: • Just Strangers  "Morning, Bright and Early"

Keep up with the artists: and

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A Walters band that's been gaining a reputation as a pretty good live show is readying its first song for release and inviting everyone to the party.

The Cross Country Revenue Single Release Party kicks off at 9 p.m. Feb. 24 at Red Dirt Reloaded Bar & Grill, 6425 Cache Road. I'm looking forward to hearing what music these cats make.

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This week's edition of "Today's Best Soundemonium ... for now!" with Steve Carr, a.k.a. Steve-O, and yours truly included detailed analysis and more than a few giggles regarding this year's Grammy Awards. It was a good time and included the on-the-spot composition of a show theme song by the inimitable Mr. Carr, who also told a joke. And now for the punchline:

"I had a large vowel movement."

Tune in to Magic 95.3 FM Radio around the 4:40 p.m. drive each Thursday or stream it online:, on the Apple or Android apps or on the TuneIn app, or: Visit and "like" our Facebook page, where we will be posting extended podcast versions of the show soon. Sissy Brown offered a blue song that will be podcast-only, so pay attention, peeps:

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Take your eyes and ears on a trip through the column's easy access features to start each Friday off at and click on any of the video links. Visit often. Dive into the column's YouTube channel and check out the exclusive videos from the column's video archive featuring some of the best past local (and visiting) talent that's graced Southwest Oklahoma's stages:

Soundemonium Musaic Lawton music archive homepage: Scott Rains

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