The “Red Man” Sings The Blues

As the Sun shuffled the gray morning aside, with a thump and a whoop began the third annual Native Fest – down amongst the shady trees in the courtyard of the University of Oklahoma`s South Oval area.

This festival featured such diverse musical performers as the OU Society of Native Gentlemen and the Red Dawn Blues Band – as well as, the live assembly of a traditional high plains Teepee and many Native American artisans exhibiting a variety of wares.

One really could not have asked for a better backdrop to such an occasion – as it was the morning of a home game for the OU football team and a beautiful Autumn day, ripe with constant breezes and the steady downpour of falling leaves. The campus was abuzz with the teeming masses of Sooner faithful, and it seemed that many found this occasion to be a charming prelude to the afternoon`s sporting events.

Each of the two musical acts had their own separate venues on either side of the small festival area – both out of a sense of courtesy and utility, as one group was of a purely acoustic timbre while the other required modern amplification technology. The partitioning was also evident in the arrangement of their respective performances, where neither dominated the venue but shared brief intermissions in the other`s act. One group did not “open” for the other, nor was there the idea of a “headliner” – simply two diverse musical traditions of a shared common culture.

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