Summer Breeze 2019 opens May 19 with an exciting evening of traditional bluegrass and Western swing music with three time national fiddle champion Byron Berline and his band. Bring seating and refreshments and enjoy a free evening of great music in Lions Park, Flood and Symmes in Norman. The show starts at 7:30 PM.
After moving to Los Angeles in 1969, Berline soon became one of the most popular fiddlers in the music business. Berline's early career included playing fiddle with bluegrass legends such as Bill Monroe, Dillard and Clark and Country Gazette. His long list of performing and recording credits includes The Rolling Stones, The Eagles, The Band, The Byrds, Elton John, Alabama, Mary Chapin Carpenter, The Flying Burrito Brothers, Rod Stewart, John Denver, Earl Scruggs, Emmylou Harris, Tammy Wynette, Mason Williams, Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson and Vince Gill. He also has extensive television and movie sound track credits and has appeared in Star Trek, Blaze, Back to the Future III, and Basic Instinct.
Berline has recorded seven solo albums including his highly acclaimed “Fiddle & A Song" with guest performances from Vince Gill, Mason Williams, Earl Scruggs and Bill Monroe. In 1996 the album was nominated for two Grammy awards, 'Best Album of the Year' and 'Best Song of the Year'.
Berline returned to his home state of Oklahoma in 1995 where he opened the Double Stop Fiddle Shop in Guthrie for the purpose of "visiting, trading and jamming" with folks who enjoy their music. As a natural progression the band was formed to entertain regularly in the Music Hall above the Fiddle Shop. Byron's band buddies include:
BANJO: Regarded as Oklahoma’s master of the banjo, Billy Perry has been instrumental in the music scene of this state since the age of 13 when he was performing at Springlake Amusement Park in OKC. In following years, Billy often fronted for national and internationally renowned groups in addition to playing in several bands. Billy also plays his dobro and sings lead vocals.
GUITAR: Thomas Trapp grew up in Tahlequah where his childhood was full of all things outdoors, and, since his dad and grandfather are bluegrass style guitarists, music! By the age of 15 he was fully immersed in flatpicking. Thomas won the Oklahoma State Flatpicking Contest in 2008.
FIDDLE/GUITAR: Greg Burgess has been playing guitar and fiddle for over 30 years, starting as a child. Over the years, associations with accomplished fiddlers helped form Greg's fiddling style. Greg has won the Oklahoma State Fiddle Championship numerous times, and has been ranked in the top 10 at a number of national level fiddle contests.
BASS: Richard Sharp is at home on the left-handed upright and electric bass. Richard has stayed busy with more recording sessions than can be listed and has shared the stage with numerous well known musical names. Richard's showmanship and vocal contributions to the band bring a nice variety.
DRUMS: Steve Short began playing drums with his parents' family band at a very early age. Since those days he has recorded and played with every big name imaginable, including three years with Reba McIntyre. Steve is an accomplished recording and sound engineer, and produces the Byron Berline Band's album projects. He is undoubtedly the most popular recording drummer in the area.
The Byron Berline Band is in great demand around the state, as well as surrounding states, and have extended their music through Europe. We welcome them back to Summer Breeze after too long an absence.
Free Summer Breeze Concerts are made possible, in part, by grants from the Norman Arts Council and the Oklahoma Arts Council, with major in-kind support from Norman Parks and Recreation Department. Norman Smile Center is a Major Summer Breeze Sponsor. Contributors: Skye Diers, Gingerbread Nursery School; Cindy Merrick, Therapy in Motion; Republic Bank of Norman; Tom McAuliffe, Don Cies Real Estate; The Mont; Keri & Hugh Young; Bruce & Trisha Bunce; D.M. Wealth Management; Edward Jones Investments; The Montford Inn; Hitachi; Bluebonnet Bar. Friends include: Monty Kapunkpe; The Winston; The Baked Bear; Laurel Group, LLC; Frank & Suzy Lawrence. Neighbors: Bob Schlegel; Becca Hewes, Yogalife