With over $1,000,000 in grants and payments to Austin musicians in just four years, local nonprofit Black Fret announced its fifth class of nominees during SXSW.
The 2018 Black Fret nominees include A Giant Dog, Billy King and the Bad Bad Bad, Dave Scher, Donovan Keith, Greyhounds, Israel Nash, Jaimee Harris, Jane Ellen Bryant, Jeff Plankenhorn, Kalu and the Electric Joint, Los Coast, Megafauna, Otis the Destroyer, Palo Duro, Rebecca Loebe, Shy Beast, The Texas KGB, Tomar and the FCs, Trouble in The Streets and Wood & Wire.
“This is a great milestone,” said Colin Kendrick, Black Fret co-founder. “Incredible musicians continue to call Austin, Texas home and the citizens of our fine city continue to step up by becoming members of Black Fret to support our amazing music scene.”
“It’s amazing what happens when you ask for help and seek professional advice in this city. Austin’s music community is so supportive, and as a band, we have greatly benefited from it,” said Mariclaire Glaser of Shy Beast. “What an honor it is to be nominated as a Black Fret Artist this year! We are ecstatic and have a newfound wind in our sails.” Taylor Wilkins of Otis the Destroyer added, “I’ve been watching the organization grow and help many artists throughout the years and it’s a privilege to be included among them.”
“Black Fret’s upcoming Listening Season is going to be excellent,” said Erin Ivey, Black Fret’s Director of Member Experience and 2014 Black Fret Artist. “With such a great class of nominees, each event will be a one-of-a-kind experience Black Fret is known for.”
Black Fret announced the 2018 nominees on March 14 to over 1,000 music supporters at an event held during SXSW at iconic Austin-based ad agency GSD&M’s headquarters which showcased the depth of talent Black Fret has already nurtured. Performers included past Black Fret Artists Brownout (2016 Black Fret Artist), Migrant Kids (2015 Black Fret Artist), Nakia (2015, 2016 Black Fret Artist), Ruby and the Reckless (2015 Black Fret Artist) and Swimming With Bears (2016 Black Fret Artist). Austin-based act The Band of Heathens kicked off the festivities.
The 2018 Listening Season will be filled with private listening events for Black Fret members, featuring performances by 2018 nominees, leading to the awarding of major or minor grants to all twenty nominees at the Black Fret Ball in December.
Founded in 2013, Black Fret is a public charity headquartered in Austin whose mission is to empower musicians to create and perform great new music. To date, Black Fret grant recipients have unlocked their funds by creating 301 new songs, 214 studio recordings and 164 new songs released as well as performing 441 U.S. and 36 international tour dates and over 121 community service performances for other local charities. Over the next decade, Black Fret will fund hundreds of bands and thousands of new songs while building a new Austin institution capable of supporting the sustained artistic, cultural and economic growth of Austin and the artists who call the city home.
Photography courtesy Black Fret | Cover photo 2018 Black Fret grant nominees Texas KGB