Fort Worth lands one-day music conference in April, right before big festival

Fortress Festival in the Fort Worth Cultural District day 2, April 30, 2017.
Fortress Festival in the Fort Worth Cultural District day 2, April 30, 2017.

Ready to learn more about the state’s burgeoning music scene?

If so, head on down to Cowtown in April.

That’s when a new one-day music conference — Texas Sounds and Cities — will be held at the Fort Worth Community Arts Center, the day before the Fortress Festival featuring Leon Bridges, the soul singer raised in Fort Worth.

“This conference will bring together Texas cities, music educators, musicians and music fans who aspire to keep the Texas music scene moving forward,” according to a statement from Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s office. “Conversations will be led by music industry representatives.”

Fort Worth was named one of the state’s first “music-friendly” cities in 2017 by the Texas Music Office.

Now local officials want to build on that, creating this one day “conversation” about music and communities.

“We understand the importance of music to the visitor economy,” said Mitch Whitten, a Visit Fort Worth executive. “The goal of the conference is to create an environment for music-friendly cities, other organizations and the music industry to learn, collaborate and keep the momentum going.”

The cost to attend the event on April 26 is $199. It includes breakfast, lunch, whiskey tastings and a reserved seat at the KERA 90.1 Art & Seek event at the Kimbell Art Museum.

Among the topics expected to come up that day: diversity and inclusion, music in film and television, cultivating local talent and the business of music in Texas.

In addition to Leon Bridges, the Fortress Festival in the Fort Worth Cultural District also features performances by groups including Tank and the Bangas; Bobby Sessions; the Bright Light Social Hour; and Abhi the Nomad.

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Anna M. Tinsley grew up in a journalism family and has been a reporter for the Star-Telegram since 2001. She has covered the Texas Legislature and politics for more than two decades and has won multiple awards for political reporting, most recently a third place from APME for deadline writing. She is a Baylor University graduate.