Tuesday, May 10, 2011 , Updated 12:00 a.m., May 14, 2011
Preview and video: Homegrown Music & Art Festival in Dallas
Organizer John Solis talks about the festival's location, how this festival differs from others, and what to expect from this year's event.
This upcoming Saturday marks the second annual HomeGrown Music & Art Festival in Downtown Dallas. This year boasts a gigantic lineup featuring 13 of the biggest and brightest acts to have ever been associated with the Metroplex (hence the name). So we caught up with John Solis and the rest of the Homegrown team to find out just what separates their fest from all the other local area music fests.
SubEx: Why was Main Street Garden chosen as the location rather than somewhere more obvious like Deep Ellum?
HomeGrown: Well, the park's location and proximity to Deep Ellum AND Downtown was exactly why we chose it. It's .7 miles to Deep Ellum from Main Street Garden and it is literally in the midst of the beautiful downtown Dallas skyline, so ... perfect!
SubEx: Is using the best of the local music scene a way to promote the Main Street Garden area? Or perhaps is it a way to promote local music by bringing to a group of folks who may not ever venture into Deep Ellum? Maybe a little of both?
It's definitely a symbiotic and mutually beneficial relationship that we do hope will bring people in to see, not only the great talent but, yes, a resurging Deep Ellum, the great new Arts District, all the new restaurants and clubs and bars in Downtown. We hope to help introduce people to all of it.
SubEx: There are several of these "fests" in the area each year (Deep Ellum Arts Fest, 35C, DOMA Showcases, just to name a few). What makes Homegrown different? What sets it apart/makes it unique? Why should people come?
Definitely the location and the park. It's really great for this kind of thing. It was cool last year to see people with their dogs hanging out on the great lawn and kids playing in the fountains and on the playground. I mean, it was actually made for this sort of thing. And, you know, our talent is awesome. Not that that sets us apart from those other great festivals but we love our line-up!
SubEx: Where do you see the fest in five years? What are the long(er) term goals for the thing?
We certainly want to grow as the area grows. It'd be really awesome to go to two days at some point and maybe use Main Street Garden and the deck park over Woodall Rodgers and really bring some national notoriety to the city with it ... nothing major!
SubEx: How was the final lineup settled upon, and who are some of the acts you are most excited to see (or most excited for other people to see)?
We're as excited as can be about the whole thing and really do hope people will see all of it. That said, Astronautalis and Analog Rebellion both as full bands is super sweet! We can't wait to see Neon Indian and School of Seven Bells and Ishi, always. It's kicking off strong with Grant Jones & the Pistol Grip Lassos and then Slobberbone. I'll go through all 13 bands right now! But seriously, when you take the total pool of talent available and get down to 13 acts, well, it's just gonna be stout. Finalizing it is for sure the toughest part. You always want to squeeze more bands in somehow but there's only so many hours in the day ... Saturday, May 14.
SubEx: How does the festival promote other arts/culture besides just music? How does it do this?
Mostly by providing a venue, an outlet, for the artists that will be present, be they sculptors, photographers, painters, to come together with potential and new consumers. We've tried to make it as affordable as possible to anyone that wants to participate. Doing it all on a big scale and catching peoples' attention really helps so, in that spirit, we're working on a large, live art demonstration to take place during the event but it's still kind of a secret. We'll just say ... HunterMurals!
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