By Michael Kinney
Like most up-and-coming bands, Red Club wants to make a name for itself. In order to do that, the 2×4 blues act devotes hours to perfecting the craft of producing great music. The Oklahoma City bandmates also work hard to be the kind of group known for giving back to its community.
“The catalyst for the Bricktown Freedom Music Festival (BFMF) was a simple conversation I had with ‘Ferocious’ Steve Saak, our drummer,” Red Club’s Andy Cullen said.
The pair got to talking about bucket lists, which led to the idea of organizing a benefit concert, Cullen said.
Bricktown Freedom Music Fest opens 3 p.m. Saturday in the Bricktown Brewery parking lot, 1 N. Oklahoma Ave.
Tickets are $20 or $10 at the door for service members with a valid military ID and free for children 5 years old and younger. The parking lot behind the brewery will open to foot traffic, with a large stage located at the west end. Organizers also will close Oklahoma Avenue between E. Main Street and E. Sheridan Avenue.
Longtime country performer John Michael Montgomery headlines the event. Red Club is scheduled to perform, as will Built for Speed, Corey Kent White, Rob West and comic Zach Smith.
“This is just a great, fun family atmosphere that’s really welcoming. … You can bring out the lawn chairs and enjoy some nice weather in Oklahoma,” said Amber Moulder, Warriors for Freedom executive director. “We [also] have some food trucks coming out.”
While the event is a great way to spend an evening, organizers said they want guests to know how important their support is for the two charities it benefits.
Warriors for Freedom is an Oklahoma City-based nonprofit that is known throughout the state and entertainment industry for its work helping those in the military as they confront depression, PTSD, traumatic brain injuries and other service-oriented issues.
Water4 also provides valuable services from its home base in Oklahoma City.
Across the globe, 2,200 children die each day from lack of clean water. By providing education, expertise and capital, Water4 helps impoverished communities around the world improve sanitation and reduce disease by drilling clean water wells and improving access to safe, clean water sources.
Cullen said Bricktown Freedom Music Fest proceeds will be split 50/50 between Warriors for Freedom and Water4.
“We wanted to ensure that our efforts would help organizations in our own backyard while having an impact worldwide,” Cullen said.
And event headliner Montgomery has been a long-time supporter of veterans.
“One of his more recent hits, ‘Letters from Home,’ deals with some of the issues servicemen and women struggle with,” Cullen said. “Both organizations that will benefit provide services and help that change, improve and often save lives.”
Michael Kinney is a Freelance Writer with Eyeamtruth.com