PHOTOS: CTX’s monthly Meet the Artist and Music event is gaining popularity

CTX Coffee Labs, at 11 North Water Street, hosted a successful “Meet the Artist” event at their shop on Friday night, May 4th. The “artist” showcased was actually twofold—a visual artist, painter Kathy Soliday, and a musician, guitarist and singer Joe McLerran, both of Sapulpa. The coffee was delicious, as usual (try the Spring Fever Latte the next time you go—it features honey, lavender, and a “touch” of Mexican chili), the crowd sizable and the art, of both mediums, exceptional.

Award-winning artist Kathy Soliday has painted most of her life but has only seriously been painting since her retirement from American Airlines (Sabre) eight years ago. This is hard to believe, as her paintings are excellent, and depict beautiful, lifelike images of a menagerie of animals. We were surrounded by her works of birds, large cats, bison, buffalo, lambs, horses, and more, during the evening. She states that she “took an art class for fun one day” and that in the class they “painted [their] pets and it just took off from there.” She “had never painted animals before, but always loved their beauty.” You can see her passion for animals and their unique elegance in her work.

Kathy and her husband, Carl, who is a lifelong Sapulpan, moved here from Owasso five years ago, and we are glad they did. Carl is a member of the local classic car club, we will see him at the Route 66 Blowout on June 2nd. Kathy grew up in a small town in Florida, Sanford, so she enjoys and feels comfortable in our tight-knit community.

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Musician Joe McLerran, originally from Colorado, performed with his father Robbie and son John, making it a three-generation ensemble. John, at only four years-old, mostly contributed adorableness and enthusiasm, but you can tell that he is clearly on his way to becoming a skilled professional. Of one of the songs they played, John says he “knew it before [he] was born.”

Joe uses two different guitars, and played American jazz and blues, and a style of American-influenced Brazilian jazz called “Choro,” that Joe described as the “older brother of American Jazz.” He would know, as he just returned from a long trip to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, where he had the opportunity to hone both his choro and his Portuguese skills.

He also included standards like Seven Come Eleven by Charlie Christian, Deep Creek by Jelly Roll Morton, and Stompin’ at the Savoy by Chick Webb.

Joe and his father are excellent, smooth, toe-tapping musicians whose music one could listen to for hours. You can catch them all over the region; check out Joe’s Facebook page for his whereabouts:

Kathy paints from her home studio in Sapulpa; her work will be available for sale at CTX Coffee and at Mayfest next week in downtown Tulsa. You can also go to her website: to see her work and to contact her for pet commissions.

The next Meet the Artist Event is scheduled for either the first or second weekend in June.