OKC Musician, Low Down Leon, Robbed Of Van, Drums
OKLAHOMA CITY - A local musician is robbed of his livelihood. And on this Father's Day, his daughter is determined to raise enough money to get her dad back on stage.
“Come in here, cleaned up, put on my hat, hit the gate, no van,” musician Curtis Hays. “I thought somebody's playing a trick on me.”
Curtis hays soon realized it was no joke. On Wednesday, someone stole his van full of musical equipment right out of his driveway in NW OKC.
“There's no word for that it's terrible you know,” he said. “Probably $1,200 worth of just symbols, I had all Zildjian cymbals.”
The fun-loving musician known as Low Down Leon has performed for decades, playing drums and guitar.
“Thirty years right here in the city six nights a week playing motel clubs traveled on the road with a few circuit groups,” Hays said.
However, a few years ago, Low Down Leon gave up the bar scene and opted to play for a more mature crowd.
“I play nursing homes, retirement places, memory care places,” he said. “I go in there and make the people party and dance in their chairs or wheelchairs.”
“They may be asleep by the time he gets there, but by the time he leaves, they're alive,” said Jessica Karniewicz, Hays’ daughter.
Determined to get her dad back out there, Jessica spent days scouring the city for the van.
“My mom and dad, they don't have the money to replace it,” she said.
While the $5,000 loss has set him back, it's his book of all his handwritten songs, that is truly priceless.
“The book that's killer that took years to figure out all those chords to those songs,” Hays said.
"These people don't realize everything that they've taken away,” said Karniewicz.
However, Low Down Leon plans to get back out there with a little help from his friends on Facebook.
“Hundreds of people, say ‘you know, I’ve got microphones and chords, just come and get them,’ people I hardly know, some of them,” he said. “They're other musicians. What a brotherhood that is, it's like family.”
If you want to help, the family set up a GoFundMe account, click here.