Noname: ‘One of the Best Rappers Alive,’ Says Rolling Stone of Metro Music Series Headliner

Chicago-raised artist Noname, aka Fatimah Warner, blurs the lines of poetry and hip-hop through the music she’ll perform during her headlining tour stop March 3, 2019 at ACM@UCO Performance Lab, 329 E. Sheridan Ave., in Oklahoma City.

Check out her first-ever video, “Blaxploitation,” from her recent release “Room 25” and the related article in Rolling Stone.

Says Rolling Stone of the video: On Tuesday, the Chicago rapper dropped the “film” for “Blaxploitation,” a quick, frenetic cut from this year’s excellent Room 25. In it, she’s nowhere to be seen. Instead, a giant child frolics through Chicago; they’re as large as a skyscraper and play, nap and destroy their way through the city streets. “Chicago Under Siege,” the television chyrons read, “Monster Baby Must Be Stopped.”

The March 3 concert is part of the Academy of Contemporary Music at the University of Central Oklahoma’s (ACM@UCO) continuing Metro Music Series celebrating the school’s 10th anniversary.

Tickets are $25 at acm-uco.eventbrite.com. Original Flow and The Fervent route will open.

In 2016, her debut album, the “Telefone” mixtape, found the artist introducing herself to a worldwide audience. Describing the project as “an introductory conversation with someone you’re interested in,” she quickly earned everyone’s attention.

In September 2018, her full-length studio album “Room 25” was again received with universal acclaim.

A Rolling Stone headline declared, “Noname is one of the best rappers alive.”

Pitchfork decreed, “The Chicago rapper’s second album is a transcendent coming-of-age tale built around cosmic jazz and neo-soul, delivered by a woman deeply invested in her interiority and that of the world around her.”

Consequence of Sound raved, “Noname turns every head in the house on the compelling ‘Room 25.’ … She doesn’t just make keen observations; she sends those syllables skipping down the tongue.

Spin said the performer: “A complete one-of-one act who continues to grow in real time outside of the limelight, Noname makes a subtle yet strong statement for women providing alternatives to one-dimensional rap archetypes.

She grew up in Bronzeville, a historic neighborhood on Chicago’s southside that has famously attracted accomplished black artists and intellectuals of all types. After releasing “Telefone,” she relocated to Los Angeles, where she’s said she prefers live comedy to high-dollar indulgence.

In fact, NME said of her most recent album, “Much of ‘Room 25’ is not only smartly constructed — it’s laugh-out-loud funny. … It’s flawless.

ACM@UCO’s Metro Music Series is sponsored by Oklahoma Gazette, Exchange Music, KOSU Radio, ArtWorks, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Oklahoma Arts Council.

Two Unique Concerts Raise Awareness of Homelessness, Food Insecurity While Delivering Great Live, Local Music

In time for the holidays, the Academy of Contemporary Music at the University of Central Oklahoma (ACM@UCO) hosts events Dec. 7 and 8 that deliver great live, local music while uplifting our community.

Oklahoma’s communities endure a higher rate of food insecurity than the national average, consistently ranking among the top 10 states facing this issue. More than half a million Oklahoma men, women and children struggle with food insecurity every day, and our “week of giving” will help provide much-needed aid to three local organizations — the Jesus House, The Homeless Alliance and Northeast Resource Center.

First, in a showcase sure to move fans jazz, rock, pop, Americana, jam-band and community activism alike, Tulsa-based acts COMBSY and HENNA ROSO co-headline a concert 7 p.m. Dec. 7 at ACM@UCO Performance Lab, 329 E. Sheridan Ave., in Bricktown.

Combsy, Henna Roso, their nonprofit record label Horton Records and ACM@UCO have joined to support longtime urban outreach organizations the Jesus House and The Homeless Alliance.

Tickets to the Dec. 7 event are $10 at acm-uco.eventbrite.com, or guests can donate nonperishable food and good, used clothing items. (Donation suggestions: gloves, hats, socks, blankets, lip balm, hand warmers, coats and lotion.)

Second, the following night is HIP HOP FOR A CAUSE, 7-9 p.m. Dec. 8 in ACM@UCO’s Songwriting Room, 25 S. Oklahoma Ave. (first floor), in Bricktown. The showcase features up-and-coming artists while supporting the Northeast Resource Center with a clothing drive. Cover is $5 or donation of new or gently used clothing.

The events are part of the Academy of Contemporary Music at the University of Central Oklahoma’s (ACM@UCO) continuing Metro Music Series celebrating the school’s 10th anniversary.

ACM@UCO’s Metro Music Series is sponsored by Oklahoma Gazette, Exchange Music, KOSU Radio, ArtWorks, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Oklahoma Arts Council.

Dec. 7: Combsy and Henna Roso

Chris Combs, guitarist, composer and member of Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey, released his first, self-titled solo album, “Combsy,” in late 2017. “Combsy” is a lush, groove-heavy album, deftly sourcing jazz, hip-hop, electronic and rock genres with sonic landscapes that appeal to festy heads, jazz junkies and music lovers of all types.

With a stellar lineup of Tulsa and New Orleans musicians, a rich layer of rhythms and horns provide the platform and space for Combs to spread out and explore his nuanced guitar work.

Although far from careful, “Combsy” comes to the ear as curated and intentional and with a healthy sense of both the history and future of instrumental music. The group’s new single, “Fell Through,” was released in October, available on Spotify.

Joining Combsy is Henna Roso, a musical collective dedicated to fighting hunger in America. Blending elements of jazz, funk, and soul Henna Roso creates a unique sonic landscape rich in melody and feel. The band has heart, too, and is dedicated to fighting hunger. It hosts food drives at each of its shows and donates 10 percent of all its revenue to help fight food insecurity, providing sustained support for hunger-related issues.

The event showcases Oklahoma musicians and Horton Records, based in Tulsa and founded by its namesake, Brian Horton. Horton Records is a nonprofit, volunteer-sustained organization providing everything from band management to creating, sustaining and promoting local music and Oklahoma’s musical heritage.

Posted by Queen Caution on Saturday, June 30, 2018

Dec. 8: Hip Hop for a Cause

Nov. 8 Hip Hop for a Cause performers include Kayai, Kuda, Queen Caution, The True CW, Odessa Ireign, Indygo Shai, and DJ Shaheed Ali will be on the ones and twos at ACM@UCO’s main campus, in its Songwriting Room.

Please note this is an 18+ event. For more information about Hip Hop for a Cause, please visit the ACM@UCO event page on Facebook.

Jabee Williams adjusts a knit cap on his head, wearing a white T-shirt, and showing off the tattoos on his bicep and forearms, including one of the logo design for his 2016 "Black Future" album

Congratulations to Oklahoma Gazette’s Forty Under 40 Class of 2018!

Congratulations to Oklahoma City metropolitan area leaders named as Oklahoma Gazette‘s “Forty Under 40” class of 2018.

This year’s class also includes four ACM@UCO-tied honorees!

Including

• ACM faculty, local entrepreneur and hip-hop musician Jabee Williams
• ACM alum and Tower Theatre managing partner Stephen Tyler
• respected ACM supporter, collaborator and ACM@UCO workshop leader Desiree Yearby, a public relations professional who also founded, owns and operates GotSteeze.net
• former ACM administrative assistant and current DeadCenter Film Festival coordinator and head of operations Alyx Picard Davis

See all 40 of this year’s honorees at okgazette.com.

Current Joys (Photo by Matthew James Wilson)

SUNDAY! Current Joys Brings Prolific Singer-Songwriter Nick Rattigan to ACM Performance Lab in Bricktown

Current Joys headlines a Nov. 18 tour stop at ACM@UCO Performance Lab, 329 E. Sheridan Ave., in Bricktown. Doors open at 7 p.m. Local acts Love Seats and The Lunar Laugh (acoustic) open. Tickets are $10, available at acm-uco.eventbrite.com.

Current Joys is the enigmatic solo project of 25-year-old Nevada-born singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Nicholas Rattigan. In addition to Surf Curse, his minimal two-piece band with Jacob Rubeck, Rattigan has been releasing a prolific catalog of heart-wrenching no-wave ballads via Bandcamp under a handful of names (including The Nicholas Project and Tele/Visions).

Read more about Current Joys in our blog!

Watch the full Audiotree Live sessions with Current Joys, recorded in April. It’s awesome:

Ciara Brooke in a pink silk gown and elbow-length black gloves in a promo photo for her new album, Diva Diaries

Album Release Show: Ciara Brook Debuts ‘Diva Diaries’ at Friday event in Bricktown

ACM@UCO Student Organization hosts a Friday album release show for ACM alumnus Ciara Brooke as she debuts her new project “Diva Diaries.” Special guests include Rozlyn Zora and chasertheprince.

The event is 7-10 p.m. Friday, Nov. 9, at ACM@UCO Performance Lab, 329 E. Sheridan Ave., in Bricktown. Admission is $5 at the door or FREE with valid UCO student ID.

Like and follow Ciara on social media:
facebook.com/ciarabrookemusic
instagram.com/ciarabrookemusic
ciarabrooke.com

Hear her new album, “Diva Diaries” on Spotify!

Musician Steven Van Zandt sits for a portrait next to a window in what looks to be a loft.

Iconic American musician ‘Little Steven’ Van Zandt joins ACM@UCO executive director Scott Booker for Nov. 26 masterclass in OKC

Ahead of his Nov. 26 concert in Oklahoma City, longtime musician, actor and actor Steven Van Zandt joins Scott Booker, executive director of the Academy of Contemporary Music at the University of Central Oklahoma (ACM@UCO) for a Q&A-style interview and masterclass. The event is 2 p.m. Nov. 26 in ACM@UCO’s Songwriting Room (first floor), 25 S. Oklahoma Ave. in Bricktown.

The event is part of the Academy of Contemporary Music at the University of Central Oklahoma’s (ACM@UCO) continuing Metro Music Series celebrating the school’s 10th anniversary.

Steven Van Zandt plays guitar and sings during a concert

Steven Van Zandt / Photo courtesy Big Hassle Media

During the masterclass, Van Zandt will discuss his history past and current projects. ACM@UCO CEO and Executive Director Scott Booker will lead the discussion, which is free and open to the public.

Van Zandt’s accomplishments are many. He is a musician, performer, songwriter, arranger, music producer, music supervisor, TV producer, actor, director, Broadway producer, TV and film composer, live event producer, international DJ, activist, historian, teacher and member of the New Jersey and Rock and Roll halls of fame. He is also recognized internationally as one of the world’s foremost authorities on both contemporary and traditional rock ’n’ roll.

“I’m thrilled that Steven Van Zandt is joining ACM@UCO for this masterclass,” said ACM@UCO CEO and Executive Director Scott Booker. “His career spans decades, generations and even mediums — recording, touring, acting, filmmaking, philanthropy and activism. He also embodies our school’s mission to educate and encourage entrepreneurial vitality throughout the music business.

“I expect this to be an extremely informative and entertaining masterclass,” Booker continued. “If I had it my way, we’d convince him to stay and he’d be here every day.”

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band album "Born in the U.S.A."

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band album “Born in the U.S.A.”

After helping create the “Jersey Shore” sound with the band Asbury Jukes, he became a founding member of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band (and co-produced seminal Springsteen/E Street Band albums “The River” and “Born in the U.S.A.”). He has gone on to become a successful solo artist in his own right, recording and performing solo with his band Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul.

Last year, Van Zandt released “Soulfire,” his first new album in more than 15 years — returning to his rhythm and blues roots. Rolling Stone magazine named the project one of its “Best Albums of 2017.” In April, he released a three-disc CD box set, “Soulfire Live!,” with a 7-inch vinyl box set and two-disc Blu-Ray to be released this fall.

Additionally, his songs have been performed by artists such as Jackson Browne, Pearl Jam, Jimmy Cliff, Damian Marley, Margo Price, Gary U.S. Bonds, Darlene Love, Nancy Sinatra, Brian Setzer and Black Uhuru, among others.

A longtime activist, Van Zandt has twice been honored by the United Nations for his political activism, including the “Sun City” project and film, and his involvement in “International Peace Day” along with Peter Gabriel. He also established the Solidarity Foundation to promote the sovereignty of indigenous peoples and to foster economic development in harmony with the earth.

Steven Van Zandt sits for a publicity photo in front of a set of lockers, wearing his trademark black bandanna, sitting with his arms crossed

Steven Van Zandt / Photo courtesy Heidi Gutman

Many also recognize him from his seven-season co-starring role on the “Sopranos,” as well as his work starring in, cowriting, executive producing and supervising the music for “Lilyhammer,” the first original programming to stream on Netflix.

In 2001, he launched “Little Steven’s Underground Garage,” his internationally syndicated radio show, often called the most successful syndicated rock music radio show in the past 40 years. He also created and produces the first two channels of original content on SiriusXM Satellite Radio, the Underground Garage (Channel 21) and Outlaw Country (Channel 60).

Little Steven and the Disciples of Tour are back on the road this fall with their Soulfire Teacher Solidarity Tour. The landmark live tour benefits The Rock and Roll Forever Foundation’s TeachRock program and has reached the incredible goal of registering over 10,000 teachers (and counting) to use the TeachRock music history curriculum. Founded by Van Zandt, the foundation creates education materials using the history of popular music to create engaging, multicultural lesson plans for history, social studies, language arts, music and science classrooms, all of which are available to educators at no cost.

He joins the ACM@UCO masterclass before his scheduled 8 p.m. Nov. 26 concert at Tower Theatre in Oklahoma City. Learn more about tickets and that show at towertheatreokc.com.

ACM@UCO’s Metro Music Series is sponsored by Oklahoma Gazette, Exchange Music, KOSU Radio, ArtWorks, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Oklahoma Arts Council.

Check in with ACM@UCO at facebook.com/acm.uco and acm-uco.eventbrite.com as we announce additional Metro Music Series shows, events and surprises through the year.

For more information about ACM@UCO, visit acm.uco.edu.

About ACM@UCO Metro Music Series

The 2018-2019 school year marks ACM@UCO’s tenth anniversary. To celebrate, it expanded its long-running Metro Music Festival into a yearlong event. The revamped Metro Music Series includes the High Noon Showcase, presenting free shows by ACM@UCO-tied music acts and tastemakers; its ACM@UCO Performance Lab series by regional and national touring acts; and a growing roster of masterclasses, clinics and workshops with industry leaders, many of which are open to students and the public.

Stay tuned to the Performance Lab at facebook.com/acmucoperformancelab and ACM@UCO @acmuco for updates and announcements about even more concerts and events!

High Noon Showcases

ACM@UCO Songwriting Room, 25 S. Oklahoma Ave. (first floor), in Bricktown. All shows begin at 12:15 p.m. Public welcome. Free admission.

• Nov. 19: Sam Weber

ACM@UCO Performance Lab concerts

329 E. Sheridan Ave., in Bricktown. Doors open 7 p.m. unless noted. Public welcome. Tickets at acm-uco.eventbrite.com.

• Nov. 14: Mac DeMarco (solo), with Leotie
• Nov. 18: Current Joys, with Love Seats and The Lunar Laugh (acoustic)
• Nov. 30: Colourmusic album release show, with Applied Music Program and Net
• Dec. 3-4: ACM@UCO Alive! student performance showcase
• Dec. 7: Combsy and Henna Roso (Horton Music Showcase)
• March 3, 2019: Noname, with Original Flow and The Fervent Route
• April 27, 2019: An evening with The Tallest Man on Earth (solo)

Masterclasses, clinics and listening sessions

ACM@UCO, 25 S. Oklahoma Ave. (first floor), in Bricktown. Public welcome unless otherwise noted. Free admission.

• Nov. 18: Current Joys Q&A clinic (open to ACM students)
• Nov. 26: 2 p.m.: Masterclass Q&A between Steven Van Zandt and ACM@UCO Executive Director Scott Booker
• Nov. 28: 2 p.m.: Listening session with ACM@UCO faculty Tyler Garcia (Third Eye Blind, “Third Eye Blind”)
• Dec. 3: 2 p.m.: Listening session with ACM@UCO staff Jennifer Chancellor (DJ BC: “The Beastles: Ill Submarine”)

Musician John Fullbright sitting at a piano, looking at the camera.

FRIDAY! Special Guest John Fullbright Joins Paul Benjaman, Jacob Tovar at ACM Performance Lab in Bricktown

In a showcase sure to move country, rock, Americana and Southern rock fans alike, Paul Benjaman and Jacob Tovar co-headline a concert 7 p.m. Nov. 2 at ACM@UCO Performance Lab, 329 E. Sheridan Ave., in Bricktown.

concert poster depicting Paul Benjaman and Jacob TovarFriday’s show also features special guest and acclaimed keyboardist, pianist and singer-songwriter John Fullbright playing keys with Benjaman and Tovar during their sets. The Grammy-nominated Americana musician joins the Horton Records music showcase in between tour dates.

Paul Benjaman’s distinctive, groove-based songs meld both the American swagger and the lyrical songwriting prowess of artists like Leon Russell, JJ Cale, Wilco, Warren Zevon and Little Feat. Similarly, Horton Records labelmate Jacob Tovar evokes the wry wit of Buck Owens or C.W. McCall and a Southern-rock tinged amalgam of both Hank Williams Sr. and Jr.

The concert is part of the Academy of Contemporary Music at the University of Central Oklahoma’s (ACM@UCO) continuing Metro Music Series celebrating the school’s 10th anniversary. Tickets are $10, available at eventbrite.com.

One-man band Mike Hosty sings while playing drums and guitar during this Play It Loud webisode.

WATCH: Longtime OKC Musician and ACM Faculty Mike Hosty in Season Two Premiere of ‘Play It Loud’

About the ‘Play It Loud’ Season Two Premiere

From Brandy McDonnell at NewsOK/The Oklahoman:

“Play It Loud,” an original music series that follows award-winning Oklahoma independent filmmaker Adam Hampton as he explores the state’s vibrant music scene, features well-known one-man band Mike Hosty in the first episode of its second season.

The installment opens with Hosty performing his signature song “Oklahoma Breakdown,” which red dirt music star Stoney LaRue is known for covering. Complete with kazoo solo, naturally.

The 22-minute showcase also includes an interview in which the self-described platypus talks about music, standup comedy, childhood inspiration and more. Hampton quotes both the Bible and Frank Zappa in this episode, and it doesn’t seem at all weird given we’re talking about Hosty here.

Each approximately 20-minute installment of “Play It Loud,” presented by Shawnee’s Grand Casino Hotel & Resort, features an intimate interview and performance by an Oklahoma musician.

Read more from McDonnell’s story at NewsOK.com.

‘Play It Loud’ episode format

“Play it Loud” series host Adam Hampton described the series in this June interview for potawatomi.org:

Adam Hampton drinks from a coffee mug in this portrait

Adam Hampton

“In each episode, I speak with each artist and try to capture in our discussion some part of who they are, what they’ve been through or what they’re wanting to say. We also have them play an acoustic performance, and we have them play with a full band on the Play It Loud stage at the Grand.

“The format may shift from one artist to the other, but the components remain the same: The discussion, the performances, the theme of music as a bridge between people, and we want the visual experience to be fun. … So we shot it like an unscripted movie. We turned on our cameras in the coolest environments possible and let it rip.”

Read more from that season one interview at potawatomi.org.

Learn more about the “Play It Loud” series at grandresortok.com/playitloud.

 

Hip-hip and spoken-word artist Noname in black-striped overalls, crouched in front of a white background

Hip-Hop and Spoken-Word Juggernaut Noname Headlines March 3, 2019 Concert in Bricktown

Chicago-raised artist Noname, aka Fatimah Warner, blurs the lines of poetry and hip-hop through the music she’ll perform during her headlining tour stop March 3, 2019 at ACM@UCO Performance Lab, 329 E. Sheridan Ave., in Oklahoma City.

The event is part of the Academy of Contemporary Music at the University of Central Oklahoma’s (ACM@UCO) continuing Metro Music Series celebrating the school’s 10th anniversary.

Tickets are $25, and go on sale to the public 10 a.m. CT Nov. 2 at acm-uco.eventbrite.com. Original Flow and The Fervent Route will open.

In 2016, her debut album, the “Telefone” mixtape, found the artist introducing herself to a worldwide audience.

Describing the project as “an introductory conversation with someone you’re interested in,” she quickly earned everyone’s attention.

In September 2018, her full-length studio album “Room 25” was again received with universal acclaim.

A Rolling Stone headline declared, “Noname is one of the best rappers alive.”

Pitchfork decreed, “The Chicago rapper’s second album is a transcendent coming-of-age tale built around cosmic jazz and neo-soul, delivered by a woman deeply invested in her interiority and that of the world around her.”

Consequence of Sound raved, “Noname turns every head in the house on the compelling ‘Room 25.’ … She doesn’t just make keen observations; she sends those syllables skipping down the tongue.”

Spin said the performer: “A complete one-of-one act who continues to grow in real time outside of the limelight, Noname makes a subtle yet strong statement for women providing alternatives to one-dimensional rap archetypes.”

She grew up in Bronzeville, a historic neighborhood on Chicago’s southside that has famously attracted accomplished black artists and intellectuals of all types. After releasing “Telefone,” she relocated to Los Angeles, where she’s said she prefers live comedy to high-dollar indulgence.

In fact, NME said of her most recent album, “Much of ‘Room 25’ is not only smartly constructed — it’s laugh-out-loud funny. … It’s flawless.”

ACM@UCO’s Metro Music Series is sponsored by Oklahoma Gazette, Exchange Music, KOSU Radio, ArtWorks, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Oklahoma Arts Council.

Hear Noname’s new album, “Room 25” on Spotify: