by Douglas Mayberry
My experience started at Opolis to pick up my ticket. From there, I treated myself to the sounds of downtown Norman as I strolled to the first hosting location, Bison Witches’ Bar & Deli. From the wire murals on the crimson walls to the casually-themed bar, patrons filled the walls waiting for their drinks. Our group grabbed a table and ordered some of the best chips & dip Norman has to offer for our first stamp. We enjoyed the thematic appearances of Valentine’s themed fluorescent pink accoutrements and themed bar specials.
From there, we headed to our next stop, Das Boot Camp. Das Boot is a German-themed bar specializing in their namesake, pint glasses shaped in boot form. For those who have seen the crude approximation in comedy film, Beerfest (2006), the boot presents a unique challenge. For those uninitiated, the key is to turn the boot ninety degrees to the right as the escaping air reaches the heel. After a few flights and a round of Boots, we collected our second stamp.
By then we were rushing to make the 9 pm call time at Opolis, so we rushed through The Garage and Red Brick Bar on our way to our penultimate stop, McNellie’s Abner Ale House. McNellie’s features a split-level design, equipped with a second level featuring live music and a smoker’s den. The jazz/blues group Harumph performed tracks of their upcoming record due in June, with bassist Dave Leach pressing their style as a great addition for Norman’s upcoming Jazz in June festival.
With fully-stamped tickets in hand, we finally headed over to Opolis to pick up our t-shirts and support the local music scene. Self-coined “The Queen of Oklahoma,” Carter Sampson opened up with some original tunes from her fresh-off-the-press, Wilder Side. Engineered by accomplished songwriter Travis Linville, Wilder Side features an echo-y bluegrass tone that made even a gypsy heart feel at home at Opolis.
Fresh off an Earmilk feature, PVLMS (read: PALMS) filled the room with atmospheric synths and calming dance beats that really brought the room together. Duo Lexi Sacco and Frank Stevens performed tracks off last year’s Compassion, as well as their newest single, “Shutters.”
Closing the night, Jabee found the Valentine’s vibe slow jam performing tracks off his upcoming release, Black Future. Recorded at Local Cuts Studio in Tucson, AZ, Black Future features what Jabee describes as, “vinyl is the casket and the words are my body.” Catch him at Austin’s SXSW and on Friday April 22nd at Norman Music Fest.
NMF’s Stupid Cupid Pub Crawl was a resounding success and was facilitated by the enthusiasm of everyone involved, from the fans to the crawlers to all the volunteers that helped put on the event. While raising awareness for Norman Music Fest in April, the Stupid Cupid Pub Crawl showed incredible year-over-year growth and brought the community together for some good, wholesome fun.