Dr. Hugh Foley, Professor in the Fine Arts Department at Rogers State University, contributed an article for the winter 2013 edition of Oklahoma Humanities Magazine. Dr. Foley’s article, “Celebrating Oklahoma Roots Music,” introduces the upcoming Smithsonian exhibition, “New Harmonies: Celebrating American Roots Music,” by sampling the tracks of Oklahoma music.
The article highlights Oklahoma’s music history dating back to the Native American tribes and traditions of the time, and it closes with contemporary Oklahoma-affiliated country artists such as Carrie Underwood and Blake Shelton. He touches on several genres of early roots music and elaborates how Oklahoma had a significant influence on America’s roots music and the experiences that have shaped the music.
“Virtually every sub-genre of country music can attribute substantial elements of its growth to Oklahomans or musicians associated with Oklahoma,” Foley stated in the article.
Author of the “Oklahoma Music Guide,” Foley has been published in numerous encyclopedias and books, and his video compilations on Native American music and culture have been shown at national conferences and on public television in several states. Foley has established himself as a preeminent authority on the state’s musical history. When music legend Patti Page died earlier this year, Foley was interviewed by National Public Radio about her lasting legacy.
Written by Lindsay Bolt, RSU PR Intern