Thursday 10 Jul

Admirals - Amidst the Blue

Sometimes it helps to not be very good.

Some of the best albums and artists were born out of happy accidents owed to varying degrees of early suckage — the perfect note or chord for a song found by missing the one you are aiming for, failed mimicry of an idol bearing something entirely new and great instead.

07/09/2014 | Comments 0

Kierston White - Don't Write Love Songs

The Tequila Songbirds have become just as beloved as about any group around these parts. And how could they not?

Featuring a revolving cast of the Sooner State’s most badass female performers, it’s a power hour of some of the best songwriting coming out of central Oklahoma. Sure, they might not technically be family, but they are clearly a band of sisters all the same, bonded by the same brand of whiskey running through their veins.

07/01/2014 | Comments 0

Depth & Current - Dysrhythmia

"Overproduced" is a term thrown around all too indiscreetly nowadays, usually applied when the thing that sticks out about a song or album is how it sounds rather than how it is constructed. Yet some of the most compelling albums ever crafted embodied a certain aesthetic that was just as skillfully and meticulously put together as any Bob Dylan or Miles Davis record — which is to say production is as crucial to our enjoyment of music as much as anything else; it's also the most overlooked.
06/24/2014 | Comments 0

Weak Knees - “IceBevo”

Indie rock has been in a good place as of late. Not caring about being cool is the new cool, and a couple of dudes on guitar, bass and drums can make catchy, earworm songs without being armed to the gills with computer software and vintage synthesizers.
06/17/2014 | Comments 0

Kyle Reid & the Low Swinging Chariots - “When I Was Young”

Every artist should be the star of their own creative life, which makes Kyle Reid’s steps out of the shadows of the many ensembles and supporting roles he has played in Oklahoma bands over the years to front and center on stage feel like a just journey.
06/17/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Music · Music · All that jazz

All that jazz

City crooner Michael Summers brings his swingin’ sounds to the UCO Jazz Lab.

Louis Fowler November 7th, 2012

Michael Summers
8 p.m. Saturday
University of Central Oklahoma Jazz Lab
100 E. Fifth, Edmond

Ask local jazz enthusiasts about vocalist Michael Summers, and they may refer to him as the “Michael Bublé of the 405.” This, however, is news to Summers.

“You know what? I’m not offended,” Summers said. “He’s a great singer, for sure. I’ll take it!” While pleased with the comparison, he’s quick to note that he’s his own talent.

“I’m a tenor, so my range is a little bit different that his,” he said. “His style is smoother, like an Andy Williams or a Perry Como. I have a little bit more of an edgy presence.”

Summers’ crooning will be on full display Saturday at the UCO Jazz Lab to celebrate the release of his latest album, More. He drew on a lifetime of musical experience for the disc, including R&B, soul and rock.

“The record is straight-ahead swing, but if you listen to it, there are hints and haunts of those stylings,” he said. “There’s always going to be an opportunity to bring out that style of music in my voice and anything I create. It really shows on More. I’m pretty proud at how it turned out.”

The UCO Jazz Lab has been Summers’ main musical home for “closing in on 10 years,” teaching him the difference between playing for the love of music and the love of a paycheck.

“When you take a jazz band and put them in the corner, it becomes a dinner-music set, as opposed to an area where you can ‘show,’” he said. “I tend to stay more in line with that, the type of venues that can offer a presence where you can do a stage show, as opposed to just a jazz gig.”

It’s this love of a space where musicians can flaunt their chops that has Summers most excited for Saturday’s CD release show.

“We’ve been working really hard to make it really spectacular,” he said. “We’re going to have a two-camera live feed to a big screen behind us. We’re going to record the show so we can edit for live audio and video. We’re even going to have an upstairs VIP area.”

Even with all those perks, he believes that the jazz experience is, in the end, the No. 1 reason to attend.

“Right now, I don’t know too many artists in Oklahoma who are taking on this job. I can’t think of too many standards singers around right now,” Summers said. “I say this record is real close to Frank Sinatra’s Live in Paris. It has that same kind of organic nature about it. That comes from our shows. We’re going to have some fun — a whole bunch of fun.”

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