Austin nonprofit Black Fret has come a long way in just four short years, with $730,000 in grants giving to the local music scene. When combined with direct payments to artists for performances and a new, secondary grant program, the total financial impact reaches over $1 million.
Ready to grant more money into the Austin music scene, Black Fret kicked off the 2018 season last Saturday at The Mohawk featuring a crazy eclectic lineup of 6 one-of-a-kind local acts. The musical journey, presented by Cirrus Logic, began on the outside stage with old school soul and R&B singer Donovan Keith singing to the guys with bad instincts and the lowdown ladies. Indie rockers Booher were first up on the inside stage delivering an emotion-filled display of authentic rock n’ roll.
Following Donovan Keith, 2017 major grant recipient Sarah Sharp introduced face-melting indie rockers Megafauna and announced her brand new EP due out February 19. The lovely jazz singer plans to put those Black Fret dollars to work and release a new EP every three months for the entirety of 2018.
Neo-soul outfit Palo Duro was up next on the inside stage before si-fi synth-pop duo Night Drive made their long awaited Black Fret debut outside. The evening’s finale took place inside as patrons crammed into the sardine-packed venue to witness a synthory…I mean, ‘sensory overload from our favorite electro tribe, Trouble in the Streets.
Black Fret has granted some pretty amazing Austin artists over the past four years. However, I must agree with co-founder Matt Ott. 2018 is gearing up to feature the most amazing group of musicians yet.