If You Want a Music Scene In Amarillo, Tulsa Has An Idea For You
The answer to the question of why we can't have more live music is painfully simple. It's so simple, you might be tempted to think I'm trying to be snarky. I'm not.
All it takes...is money.
I came across a post from the Tulsa Office of Film, Music, Arts & Culture. They've announced that they are taking applications for the Play Tulsa Music Program. What is that? Glad you asked.
Play Tulsa Music is a program designed to help venues in Tulsa with the costs of hiring local, local, artists for live performances. Last year, with the help of the CARES Act they had $190,000 at their disposal.
This year, with the help of sponsors and community donors, they've raised $100,000 to help venues book local artists for live performances in the months of July, August, and September.
According to their post, the funds they had went directly to the local performing artists and tech crews, and will again.
I don't know how many times I've heard someone ask why we can't get more bands, or why we don't have a better music scene. As the old saying goes, if you build it they will come. Notice, though, first you must build it.
Currently, and I may be way off here, I am unaware of any such program that exists within the city of Amarillo. I am completely unaware of any such program that so aggressively seeks to build the arts community in our town.
I miss hearing original music three nights a week. Sure, not every thing I ever heard was incredible, but a vast majority of it was well worth the $6 to $10 to get in. I miss being able to go out with the sole purpose of hearing good music I may not have ever heard before.
Where does someone go in Amarillo on a regular basis to hear original music, instead of background party noise? I would love to see at least one venue in town with the "No Covers" rule. If you want covers, go find a jukebox. They're cheaper anyways.
If we had a program like this, we could possibly see more local songwriters and performers stepping up. If word gets out that Amarillo pays well, well...then maybe we could see a great music scene develop in Yellow City.