Oliver Bennett Powers graduated from the Oklahoma College of Liberal Arts in 1974 with a degree in music performance. The bass was his musical instrument. This scholarship honors Powers and is award to music education majors needing financial assistance.
Oliver grew up in Chickasha. His mother and his aunt Mary lived in Chickasha as well. His mother set up the scholarship to honor her son. He was a graduate of Chickasha High School. He and his wife Anita Louise had two sons.
While in college, Powers worked with a variety of musicians to create contemporary rock music with a unique and experimental sound. After playing in several bands, he and two other musicians formed Debris, a band with an avant-garde sound. The band produced an album called “Static Disposal” in 1976. In 1999, the record was re-released as a CD by Anopheles Records and CDs in California and has been distributed worldwide including Germany and Japan.
After earning a master’s degree from the University of Oklahoma, Powers worked for 30 years in various fields of audio and video production. He became director of audio and lighting for the United States Senate in 1986 and was later employed as senior broadcast engineer technician for the Senate.
While living in the Washington area, he continued his interest in the string bass. He taught private lessons and enjoyed creating special arrangements for the bass and other musicians for special performances at Valley Brook Community Church.
His philosophy about music is summarized in his own words: “It is one person’s expression and another person’s free interpretation which allows someone else to participate in what may be a very sacred slice of your own being.” Back to Scholarship Page