Black Fret Announces 'Black Fret Happy Hour Concert' Series
Today Black Fret announces their "Black Fret Happy Hour Concert" series. Fueled by a $50,000 grant from the Stand With Austin fund, the Black Fret Happy Hour Concerts will deliver performances from Austin musicians to companies around the country. These performances will bring much needed income to our musicians, much needed music to our lives and an opportunity for companies to amplify these funds to extend the program. To book a Happy Hour Concert, visit here.
"Music can't exist in a vacuum," said Matt Ott, Co-founder of Black Fret and Executive Director of the Austin, Texas Black Fret Chapter. "You need the music, you need the fans and you need the funds to make sure the value these experiences bring is recognized. The funding from the Stand with Austin fund will be the seed from which hundreds of performances are given and thousands of lives are enriched. We are so thankful to those that have made this possible and are excited to get all $50,000 to our musicians as quickly as possible."
The Black Fret Happy Hour Concerts will feature musicians from Austin, Texas playing for companies large and small from around the world. Black Fret will pay each act $500 for performing to a group of up to 100 employees via virtual meeting platforms. A company will pay Black Fret $500 for each performance to cover production costs while also replenishing the initial fund from Stand With Austin to pay even more bands for future performances. The more companies and groups that sign up for a Black Fret Happy Hour concert the more the initial fund of $50,000 will be replenished, amplifying Stand With Austin's investment in our city's musicians. Additionally, Black Fret will collect donations from the audience to disperse to the performing musician as tips.
Black Fret has already executed 20 such performances for companies including Dell, Cisco and Slalom and has distributed $23,000 in direct payments and tips made during the performances to bands so far - and the corporate clients have been thrilled.
"I would have to say that our [Black Fret] Happy Hour Concert was more than we could have imagined," said Steve Shaw from VertitechIT. "More than 50% of our workforce turned out and they had an incredible time."
"Black Fret has always focused on sustainable and scalable giving," said Colin Kendrick, Founder of Black Fret. "When companies and groups who love music stand up to book a performance, they will amplify the initial Stand With Austin grant and can help hundreds of musicians. We invite all those who need a little more music in their lives to step up and book a performance."
"I have been amazed at the response over the past month," said Greg Carter, a Black Fret Member who manages the Black Fret Happy Hour Concert program. "The musicians have been grateful for the work and for getting to share their art with live audiences again. And the audiences have absolutely loved the experience and expressed their gratitude in the virtual tip jar. This is the best win-win I have seen in a long time."
"I performed for Dell and had a great time," said Graham Wilkinson, 2014 Black Fret Artist, who performed in late April for a department of 30 or so employees at Dell. "We played some great tunes and felt some great vibes. People need music in their lives. And I can't live without making it. I thank all those who listened and loved and tipped to give me some hope that we are all going to keep music a vital part of our lives."
Musicians who would like to register for consideration of being booked for a performance may do so by registering with Austin Texas Musicians at austintexasmusicians.org. Musicians will be asked to provide their streaming and social media links, website and other information to confirm their status as an active, professional Austin, Texas musician.
"Partnering with Austin Texas Musicians is a great way to help open the door for our city's musicians not only to play Black Fret Happy Hours, but also to align themselves with other critical resources," said Ott. "We are in for some rough roads ahead and the more we can come together to strengthen our community the stronger we will all be coming out of these crazy times. We welcome Austin Texas Musicians to our proud tradition of Austin supporting the live music we all love that helps to define our city."