Photo: Mark Hancock
’Tis the season for many things: joy, coexistence, pageantry. Mostly, however, ’tis the season for giving... and music — because really, which season isn’t?
Friday night at the Blue Note Lounge, one can experience all of these things, as the venue prepares for its inaugural Rock for Tots toy drive. The event’s $5 cover will be waived for those who donate an unwrapped toy; all other proceeds from the door will benefit the Toys for Tots Foundation.
Stephanie Mathis, general manager at the Blue Note and no stranger to charity work, said she believes in the potential of Oklahomans to benefit the local community.
“This is the first year I’ve done something like this,” she said. “It just made sense to try to get something together with Toys for Tots to try to get some toys for the kids in Oklahoma.”
Toys for Tots has supported the cause with a steady host of celebrities and public figures touting the charity’s merit. The great unifier, however, has been the good will of everyday citizens — the same ideal that allowed the pieces to fall in place for such an event to occur.
“Everybody was so into it and thought it was a great idea,” Mathis said. “They all wanted to get together to do it. It all just came together after that.”
The event also will play host to a diverse set of local musicians: hardcore punk rockers Your Mom are sure to provide a vibrant energy jolt, while local emcee Eight and reggae stylers Sons of Beatrice will supply the grooves.
Also on the bill is indie conglomerate Kefalonia, a new upstart from ex-Uglysuit member Israel Hindman that shares members with local bands O Fidelis and Eyes Made Ready.
A lineup like this doesn’t come along often: an all-encompassing group of sounds and musicianship that hopes to cater to a wide range of audiences.
“I’m excited to see these other genres together,” Mathis said. “It’s bringing scenes together that don’t normally see each other, with all of them all at the same venue and hopefully getting new fans for each one of them, too.”
Yet while music aims to entertain, the undisputed focus of the evening will be on a more charitable cause: providing for those in need.
“The ultimate goal is just to bring the different local music scenes together for the common goal of doing something good for the kids in Oklahoma,” Mathis said. “I would love to make this an annual event.”