Red Dirt Nation 

STILLWATER, Okla. – The distinctive sounds of red dirt music now have a new home on the internet. RedDirtNation.com is a new way for fans of this music to find new sounds and connect with their favorite bands.

Some will tell you that red dirt is more a state of mind or lifestyle than a music genre, but in regards to the music, anyone with ears can agree that the sound typically bridges country and rock sounds, and places an emphasis on quality songwriting.

Music industry authorities may typically label these sounds as Americana, alt-country, folk, or southern rock. Texans also often cite their own musical heritage with a name of ‘Outlaw Country’ – a term that comes from Ladies Love Outlaws, a 1972 Waylon Jennings album.

However, by that date, Oklahoma musicians were already using the phrase red dirt in a musical sense. So Oklahoma red dirt has always had some independent history from the Texas bloodline. Clearly, though, the Texas and Oklahoma sounds have become commingled, particularly by way of bands from Oklahoma relocating to Texas. RedDirtNation.com is set up to cover the influence of this sound throughout Oklahoma and Texas, across the country, and around the world.

Jeremy Scott, Red Dirt Nation’s administrator and videographer, tells me that from his perspective, the Red Dirt scene goes way beyond just a local focus.

“Red Dirt continues to grow with a new generation carrying on the torch,” said Scott. “Texas has certainly picked up on what started in Stillwater and I'm seeing bands on the east coast touring Oklahoma and Texas to be a part of what is happening in this area. There have been a few European artists that have come to Oklahoma to soak up the Red Dirt Sound first-hand."

Initially planned for an early 2014 launch, RedDirtNation.com has encountered some delay, but Scott explained that plenty of ground has still been covered.

“We've used that time to shoot more video, establish relationships with a number of bands, and further define what we want the website to look like,” said Scott. “We've made good use of that extra time.”

“We've recorded several bands more than once, like Mike & The Moonpies, Jason Boland & The Stragglers, Red Dirt Rangers, Chuck Dunlap and American Aquarium to name a few,” Scott added. 

Oklahomans may recognize Scott from his work with INTV Channel 25 in Tahlequah circa 2007-2010. More recently music fans and performers around the area also know him as the drummer for local rock bands Critical Mass and Flabbergaster. Being closely connected to this area means Scott already knows some of the local performers, but he’s making new friends too. And the response from the various red dirt bands has been great. He explained that several musicians have expressed how glad they are that someone is finally doing something like this – and that they want to help.

“They've made me feel so welcomed and appreciated,” said Scott. “It's awesome!”

Prior to the official launch, heaps of video footage Scott and his crew captured have already been watched thousands of times on YouTube and shared extensively on Facebook and Twitter. So look for @reddirtnation14 on social media and be sure to check out www.reddirtnation.com.

By Allen Smythe