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Fortress Festival 2018 wrap: Music's most mysterious man bids Fort Worth goodnight

Sights from Day 2 of Fortress Festival 2018

The second annual Fortress Festival returned Saturday and Sunday to the Cultural District of Fort Worth, for live music, food and fun.
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The second annual Fortress Festival returned Saturday and Sunday to the Cultural District of Fort Worth, for live music, food and fun.

And that is a wrap, folks.

To anyone who read our updates, thanks for coming along for the ride. Fortress Festival was an extremely memorable weekend, as the below social media posts indicate.

To end the festival, Australian indie rocker Courtney Barnett, Dallas-based Americana ringers the Texas Gentlemen and the most mysterious man in music gave their Fort Worth crowd a rocking Sunday lullaby.

Barnett, who will be accompanied by Saturday stars Waxahatchee on a big portion of the rest of her U.S. tour, was a fireball.

Introspective diddies followed by all-out angst, channeling another Courtney ... Courtney ... Love, maybe? But in a good way, if there is a good way of saying that.

The Texas Gentlemen kept it all the way Texas AF, as the kids say. If you didn't know it, the second day of Fortress Fest coincided with Willie Nelson's birthday, so the Gentlemen serenaded the crowd with a Sunday version of Willie's iconic "Crazy."

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The Texas Gentlemen serenage the Wildcatters stage Sunday at Fortress Fest. Matthew Martinez Fort Worth Star-Telegram

And to cap the evening and a second-straight fire festival (not to be confused with that thing that was actually called Fyre Fest, of course). There is only one Father John Misty.

For much of the crowd, Father John was a fluid silhouette, shimmying like Jim Morrison while shrouded by purple, blue and green Fortress Festival-colored smoke. He was every bit the subtle mystery as the persona he's developed. Good show, lad.

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Father John Misty coaxes the crowd gathered one last time at Fortress Festival 2018. Matthew Martinez Fort Worth Star-Telegram

By the way, we're very Instagram-jealous of festival PR superstar @djhautemess.

UPDATE 5:55 p.m.

The surprise of the show has been the avant-garde genius of Merrill Garbus aka Tune-Yards. She's easily converted the most new fans at Fortress Fest this year.

There is no genre for this extremely experimental, yet totally freeing explosion of sound she produces.

KERA radio Fort Worth producer Chris Connelly put it this way: "There's a lot of clanging and banging, but it's kind of punk, but kind of also not."



UPDATE 4:15 p.m.

The man. The myth. The Fortress Fest Millenial audience's musical grand-daddy.

Lee Fields, the 67-year-old American hero, and his Expressions. And his stunning uber-paisley suit. Overheard in the media tent: "No one is doing soul this way anymore."

He's just a guy who believes, as one of his songs goes, that "we can make the world better."

All we need @leefieldsandtheexpressions @iq3photography

A post shared by Fortress Festival (@fortressfest) on

Earlier Updates

First, we were treated to a very funky Psychedelic Sunday from two of the coolest local acts going.

Denton-based Pearl Earl draws you in. They're just so fun. Take a listen.

They have something seriously good going here. Could end up being big, IMHO.

Then we had the coolest cat on a warm afternoon, Fort Worth's own Ronnie Heart (Fairmount, to be exact). He never asked to be compared too Prince, but check his style and sound and tell me if I'm wrong.

Super synth-funk SWAG with a side of jazz flute from Juan Ospina, for the beautiful people.

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Ronnie Heart at Fortress Fest Sunday April 29 Matthew Martinez Fort Worth Star-Telegram

And for good measure, check the video wrap on Day 1 action below.

Fortress Festival once again lit up Fort Worth's Cultural District on the first of two days of music, art and food. Performances from Saturday headliners Chromeo, as well as Waxahatchee and De La Soul, were crowd favorites.

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