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Unsilent Night

Ring in the new year with a Red Dirt hangover at Cain’s Ballroom.

G.K. Hizer
November 28, 2018

If the routine of New Year’s Day gets you down, Cody Canada and his friends are providing the perfect opportunity to mix things up. A few years ago, the Hangover Ball relocated to Cain’s Ballroom, bringing an assortment of Red Dirt artists swapping tunes in a format that’s sure to give you a fresh perspective on some of your favorite songs.

This year’s lineup includes Cody Canada, Jason Boland, Mike McClure, and BJ Barham with favorites Evan Felker, William Clark Green, Wade Bowen, and Jamie Lin Wilson, Nikki Lane and Jonathan Tyler. Set up in three groupings of songwriters swapping tunes, it’s an opportunity to hear those songs stripped down to their rawest form as they were originally written. Being the holiday season, there’s always a good chance you’ll see even more of your local and Red Dirt favorites pop up and sit in for a song or two, in true community fashion.

Although the Hangover Ball settled into Cain’s Ballroom in 2015 and is celebrating its fifth year in Tulsa, its history goes back further.

“I think it began around 2001 and we started with Jason Boland, for sure, and I really can’t remember who else,” says Cody Canada, who fronted Cross Canadian Ragweed from 1994-2010. “Basically, it began with Ragweed doing New Year’s Eve at the Golden Light Cantina in Amarillo. After New Year’s, we started on our way to Steamboat [Colo.]. At that time, we were just kids who were out on the road and not worried about going home. We decided to stay there and we asked if there was a band playing the next night. When we found out it was free, we caught some other people who were going to Steamboat to play with us. The details are a little foggy, because that was back in what I refer to as the ‘Jäger days’.”

After doing the Hangover Ball in Amarillo and Oklahoma City, Canada opted to move the event to Cain’s.

“I couldn’t be happier we finally landed at Cain’s Ballroom,” Canada says. “That’s my place and I love it. I’d do gigs there five times a year, if I could sell it out every time.

“Mike [McClure)] and [Jason] Boland are pretty much always a part of it. Last year was our first year with a female in the mix, and Jamie Lin Wilson just knocked it out of the park. She was really our MVP last year. We try to spread things out and like to have at least two new people each year to keep thing fresh.”

Canada is always looking for acts that can add to the show. Some of those on his “wish list” include Chris Knight, Robert Earl Keen, Lukas Nelson, Lee Ann Womack, and the Braun Brothers.

“When I think about a sold-out crowd at Cain’s Ballroom, I think of it being loud and rowdy,” Canada says. “With Hangover Ball, I always wanted it to be a room full of people listening to how the songs originally came to be. It’s a room full of people being quiet and listening so we can share. People get to hear how the songs were originally written and what all goes into the songwriting process.”  

The Hangover Ball
Cain’s Ballroom
423 N. Main St. | Tulsa
Featuring: Cody Canada, Jason Boland, William Clark Green, Wade Bowen, Jamie Lin Wilson, Nikki Lane, Jonathan Tyler, Mike McClure, BJ Barham and Evan Felker