Oregon State University’s College of Liberal Arts, as part of the American Strings project, will be hosting a free, virtual concert featuring five-time Grammy award winner and blues artist Keb Mo on Wednesday, Aug. 19.
“There’s a bit of education involved because I’m sure we’re going to be talking about the Blues… and its role in American music history and its role today and in contemporary popular music,” said Bob Santelli, the director of popular music and performing arts.
This is the second virtual performance of the series – on Zoom because of COVID-19.
Anyone can access the concert by registering, free of charge, on OSU’s website, although donations are appreciated and will go towards student programs. Though previous American Strings performances spanned anywhere from 90 minutes to two hours, Santelli has found people’s attention wanes more easily in the virtual setting. Consequently, Keb Mo’s show will begin at 5 p.m. and stay within the one hour mark.
Kevin Roosevelt Moore, dubbed ‘Keb Mo’ by his original drummer, has wooed audiences and critics alike with his cool guitar playing and smooth vocals since his self-titled album debuted in 1994. He has won five Grammys, the most recent in 2019, and been nominated for 15.
“Here’s an opportunity to hear a great artist perform one of America’s most essential music forms, and at the same time, for people who are already connected to the Blues to be able to enjoy one of the top performers,” Santelli said. “He is highly regarded in his field and continues to have a lot of interesting things to say in music.”
Santelli will open the evening with a 20 minute Q&A section, comprised of students’, faculty and attendee’s questions, then Keb Mo will take the spotlight.
In the past, the College of Liberal Arts held around five American Strings performances in a school year, but in this uncertain time, it will host one a month and will continue to do so until they can return to a live venue in downtown Corvallis.
“I don’t know when that will be, so in the meantime, it’s our intention to make the programs, which are very popular, available online so that people can continue to enjoy them and students can continue to learn for them,” Santelli said.