THE HOUSE OF SONGS GOES TO FORT WORTH
At the end of April, The House of Songs was invited to Fort Worth to take part in The Texas Sounds and Cities Conference. Hosted by Visit Fort Worth and The Texas Music Office of the Governor. The conference was aimed at communities interested in becoming music-friendly certified by the State of Texas and others wanting to work more closely with musicians and the local music eco-system. The Texas Music Office Music Friendly Communities program provides the state’s communities with a network for fostering music industry development, and sends a clear message to industry professionals that certified communities are serious about attracting and developing music industry growth.
The day before the conference began, there was an opening night reception for invited panelists, speakers, and VIPs. After which, the invited guests were shuttled to the Hyder House, an art filled mansion for a private concert produced by The House of Songs. The evening featured a wonderful performance by local Fort Worth jazz artist Tatiana “Lady May” Mayfield, and Egyptian revolutionary artist Ramy Essam. It was a beautiful night, in an incredible setting, and it gave a good example of what The House of Songs aims to do: bring talented artists from all over the world together.
The conference itself was held the following day at Fort Worth Community Arts Center, the event hosted delegates from cities across Texas, as well as other vibrant communities throughout the nation. The House of Songs was represented on three panels. THOS’ Program Director, Graham Weber spoke on a panel entitled “Austin: Live Music Capital of the World”, where attendees could learn from the individuals and organizations who are at the forefront of making Austin the Live Music Capital of the World. Moderated by Tiffany Kerr, (Director of Marketing, Visit Austin) this panel also featured panelists: Erica Shamaly (Director of the Austin Music Economic Development Office), and Nick Shuley (President, Austin Music Movement).
After lunch, (THOS Ozarks Artist Manager) Jamie Lou Connolly took part in a discussion on how to elevate local musicians while paving a path for career opportunities in your city and beyond, entitled: "Creating Opportunities for Musicians". In addition to Jamie Lou, the panel featured Kate Dussalt (Founder, HiFi House Omaha), and Tyler Hale (Digital Music Editor & Content Producer, KCRW Los Angeles). House of Songs Founder Troy Campbell followed with a one on one talk with moderator Mitch Whitten, EVP Marketing & Strategy, Visit Fort Worth. The final speaker was Kevin Russell (Shinyribs / The Gourds) interviewed by Brendon Anthony (Texas Music Office Director).
While the focus was on Texas cities, The House of Songs was able to shine a light on not only our success in Austin, but all of the progress and accomplishments that we have proudly achieved in Northwest Arkansas. Troy focused on using NWA as an example for the delegates from cities looking to create and develop music programming, and using music as a driver for economic growth in their respective communities. The HOS Team made a great impression and many new connections and friendships were made that have potential for new cooperative projects in the future.
After the conference had ended, Graham and Jamie Lou flipped back into performer mode. Weber’s band, Western Youth, performed at Magnolia Motor Lounge in the heart of Fort Worth to an audience of conference attendees and local concert goers. Jamie Lou got up and sat in with the band, and the HOS showed Cowtown how to rock and roll. While they are in nearly constant communication during the work day, this was the first time Weber and Connolly performed together on stage. Yet another example of a successful Austin and NWA collaboration, facilitated by The House of Songs.