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2011 Charlie Christian International Music Festival features new talent, events in Oklahoma City

Brother Enoch
In a recent news release, Anita G. Arnold, executive director of Black Liberated Arts Center (BLAC), Inc., said that the 2011 Charlie Christian International Music Festival will feature fresh, new talent in the almost week-long event along with some familiar faces.  The outdoor festival that runs June 3-4, 2011, at Bi-Centennial Park in Oklahoma City will showcase the musical talents of 10 bands playing continuous music throughout the weekend.

NIKKI & DA MIXX and Brother Enoch are first timers at the festival.  NIKKI & DA MIXX, a hip, swinging group from Broken Arrow,OK, promises to “light your fire” with the sultry vocals of Nikki Washington Givens.  Brother Enoch, whose founding members are Timothy Haverkamp, John Carter, and Boris Connally, met and formed their musical trio at the University of Central Oklahoma in the spring of 2010.  Timothy is an accomplished pianist and composer who completed a Masters Degree in Jazz Studies.  John is an established and experienced percussionist and has a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology.  Brother Boris is a saxophonist, clarinetist, and flutist with a Masters Degree in Jazz Studies.  Their eclectic style is a combination of jazz, R&B, soul, classical, hip-hop, gospel and blues.

Familiar faces at the festival include Taylor Made Jazz, Kelvin Drake (Mr. Guitar), James Slaw & Friends, Jeremy Thomas Band, Cara Black Band, 411 Band, and the two headliners, Lao Tizer on Friday Night and All Funk Radio Show on Saturday Night.

The Charlie Christian International Music Festival adds a new family friendly performance piece, “Amazing Children” on Saturday, June 4.  From 3:00 to 4:00 p.m., the festival attendees will have a rare opportunity to see gifted children from Oklahoma City perform amazing feats during friendly student competition in solving rubrics cube puzzles in approximately one minute from the Dove Science Academy Elementary School, martial arts performed by championship students from Martin Luther King Jr. school as well as ballroom dancing.  Wilson Arts Integration School students will showcase their excellent talents in instrumental and vocal music. “Too often the public has a negative perception of students today and they never get to see the amazing things that students can do,” Arnold said. “We are delighted to put the spotlight on such talent.”

Wristbands for the two-day event may be purchased for $10 per day or both days for $17 at the following locations: BLAC Inc., Capitol Square Station, Charlie’s Jazz, Rhythm & Blues Store, City Cuts and Design Group, Hopkins Haircare, KM66 and Learning Tree Toy Store.  For more information, call (405) 524-3800.

Sponsors for the festival include BancFirst, Friends of the Oklahoma Historical Society Archives, and The Oklahoma City Chapter of the Links, EMSA, The City of Oklahoma City and the Oklahoma Arts Council.

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TIZER comes to Charlie Christian International Music Festival in June

Lao Tizer

In a recent news release, Black Liberated Arts Center (BLAC) Inc. in Oklahoma City, OK, announces one of three headliners for the 26th annual Charlie Christian International Music Festival. The nearly week-long event runs May 31 through June 4, 2011, in various venues in Oklahoma City. 
Keyboardist and recording artist Lao Tizer will headline the Friday, June 3 outdoor concert at Bi-Centennial Park located in front of the Civic Center Music Hall, 201 N Walker Ave. in Oklahoma City. Lao, a “Best New Jazz Artist” nominee, a Yamaha-endorsed pianist and keyboardist and his all-star band (called TIZER) have graced the world stages alongside well-renowned artists including Isaac Hayes, Boney James, Wayne Shorter, George Benson, The Commodores, The Rippingtons, The YellowJackets, and Spyro Gyra.
In 2001, his band TIZER released Golden Soul through Frat House Records. The single, “Her
Poetry,” received accolades from all sectors of the industry and charted on both the Gavin
Charts and Radio & Records’ reports and reached Billboard’s Contemporary Jazz chart.
In 2006, TIZER returned to the studio to record Diversify for Yse Records. Two singles from the album charted on both Radio & Records Jazz Indicator and charts. Diversify continues to appear on Billboard’s Contemporary Jazz Album charts thanks to airplay and Lao’s very busy concert schedule.
Lao Tizer’s concert tour includes performances at Joy of Jazz, Johannesburg, South Africa; Dubai Jazz Fest; Barbados Jazz Fest, Java Jazz Festival- Jakarta, Indonesia, The Caribbean Sea Jazz Fest, Aruba and club performances in Seoul, South Korea.
Other bands performing on Friday, June 3 are Mitch’s Brew, Kelvin Drake “Mr. Guitar,” Cara Black Band, and Taylor Made Jazz.
For more information, call BLAC Inc. at (405) 524-3800 or go online to

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25th annual Charlie Christian International Music Festival to convene June 1-6 in Oklahoma City

Black Liberated Arts Center Inc. announced this week that the 25th annual Charlie Christian International Music Festival will be held June 1-6, 2010, in Oklahoma City. This popular event will be held at several downtown venues.
 The Charlie Christian International Music Festival is the center piece of Oklahoma’s rich music history that produced international personalities Charlie Christian, father of Bebop; jazz and blues singer Jimmy Rushing; the Blue Devils, famous Territorial Band and Ralph Ellison, the voice of jazz music.
Urban contemporary jazz artist Najee and other well-known music acts (yet to be announced) will be the headliners for this year’s festival. There are more than 12 jazz, blues, gospel, rhythm & blues bands from Europe and the United States features in this year’s festival.
The Charlie Christian International Music Festival has featured music greats such as Regina Carter, the late Isaac Hayes, Branford Marsalis, the late Claude “Fiddler” Williams, Jay McShann and Little Milton; George Benson, Kirk Whalum and many others. Over the past 24 years, more than 500,000 people have danced to the music, snapped their fingers, and had a ball at the indoor and outdoor activities of the festival.
 For more information, call (405) 524-3800 or e-mail