Red Dirt Unplugged

Singers, Songs and Stories Shining a Spotlight on Heartland Roots Music

Release date December 13, 2024 | By Josh Crutchmer, author of Red Dirt

Special Editions: First-Run | All-Access 

Artist’s Editions: The Great Divide | Wyatt Flores | Kaitlin Butts | Josh Meloy | Cain’s Ballroom

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“There is so much history here that no other place has.”

Wyatt Flores

“We are always talking about how lucky we are to be from there, and how special it is as a scene.”

Read Southall

“This is such a surreal and unnatural feeling, and I try to just be grateful to God for letting us do it.”

Josh Meloy

Red Dirt Unplugged is the view from the wings as the Red Dirt music scene reaches heights never-before thought possible. At the crossroads of country, roots rock, and Americana, artists in the scene are enjoying sustained worldwide attention at a large scale for the first time in history. Wyatt Flores, Kaitlin Butts, Southall, Josh Meloy and more are walking through the doors opened by The Turnpike Troubadours and all the artists before them who first put the cracks in those same doors. As Red Dirt became less of an Oklahoma-centric scene and more of a catchall term for original, from-the-heart songwriting, harmonies and melodies, artists like Dylan Gossett, Vincent Neil Emerson, Courtney Patton, Bri Bagwell, Them Dirty Roses, and Vandoliers have been made welcome into the same fold, and find themselves thriving. Meanwhile, Red Dirt’s oldest guard — The Great Divide — is in the midst of the finest moment of its three-decade career. Over time, John Moreland and John Calvin Abney only found a stronger grip on heartstrings. Even Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers, themselves torchbearers for Arizona’s roots rock scene, have made themselves inseparable from the musicians who claim Red Dirt. Venues like Tulsa’s Mercury Lounge and Cain’s Ballroom have combined history and swagger to become must-visit showrooms for artists and fans alike.

Red Dirt Unplugged gets into all of this. Structured around The Great Divide’s 2023 homecoming concert at the Tumbleweed Dancehall in Stillwater, Oklahoma, it seamlessly connects the young artists in the midst of “blowups” like never before to the tradition, history, and confident arrogance that built Red Dirt. Author and journalist Josh Crutchmer had a front row seat to it all, and shares his perspective through an endless stream of artist interviews, side-stage musings, and thoughtful, old-fashioned concert reviews.

The natural sequel to Crutchmer’s 2020 debut book, Red Dirt, this one is a can’t miss for diehard fans and casual observers of this red-hot music scene.

(Note: All artists listed on the cover have either been interviewed or are scheduled to be interviewed by June 2024. If any artist falls through, fans who pre-order will be notified and have the option to be refunded.)

The Great Divide on stage at the Tumbleweed Dancehall in Stillwater, Oklahoma.
Wyatt Flores on stage at Stagecoach in 2024.