2008 Inductees

Miss Avalon Reece
Wayne Bennett
Tank Jernigan
Little Eddie Taylor
Vernon Powers
Paul Lewis
Rocky Frisco
Jimmy ‘the preacher’ Ellis
Media Award to:
Hardluck Jim Johnson and his blues show on KGOU Radio

Avalon B. Reece: A 45-year educator and band director in Muskogee, known for her tough and motivational approach to teaching. She was also the first black city councilwoman in Oklahoma, for Muskogee County.

Tank Jernigan: The legendary Oklahoma City sax player played for many years with D.C. Minner, backing artists like Bo Diddley. He later moved to Los Angeles, where he arranged all the horn parts for Ray Charles during his years at Capital Records.

Little Eddie Taylor: This charismatic Oklahoma City entertainer played guitar and sang with the Little Aces Band.

Vernon Powers: He began in a doo-wop quartet in Oklahoma City before switching to drums and touring the nation with Larry Johnson’s New Breed band. He later joined D.C. Minner’s Blues on the Move band and eventually went solo.

Wayne Bennett: The Sulfur-born guitarist played with many of the greats, including Bobby Bland, Boxcar Willie, Buddy Guy, John Lee Hooker, Elmore James, Cannonball Adderley, Sonny Stitt and Dexter Gordon.

Paul Lewis: The Oklahoma City bassist played with greats such as Bill Parker, Roscoe Gordon, Freddie King, Little Willie John, Ted Taylor and the legendary Sam Cooke.

Rocky Frisco: A pianist with the J.J. Cale band, the Tulsa native is known for his contribution to the blues-tinged rock style known as the Tulsa Sound, which shot musicians like Leon Russell and Eric Clapton to prominence.

Jimmy “The Preacher” Ellis: He’s a former Tulsan now living in Dallas who has performed with such acts as Little Milton, Big Mama Thornton and T-Bone Walker.

“Hard Luck Jim Johnson: He will be awarded the music and media award for his years hosting shows on KGOU from the University of Oklahoma in Norman.