Ever since Black Fret’s inaugural year in 2013, they’ve been supporting the Austin music community in unique and special ways. And the yearly Black Ball, a concert celebration of all things ATX music, is the culmination of a years worth of sounds, stages, and stunning philanthropy. We eagerly await the Black Fret Black Ball every year and hope you consider joining this incredible collective of music lovers as they give money and change lives.
What is Black Fret and the Black Ball?
Started by Matt Ott and Colin Kendrick in 2013, Black Fret’s mission is to support the Austin music community through member-supported grants. Much like an orchestra or theater, members pay yearly dues which are in turn given to the artists. In return for their dues, members are treated to exclusive listening sessions in unique, intimate venues around town. All the artists playing these shows are 100% local and fairly paid.
With that money, Black Fret provides grants to a set number of artists as voted by the members. Every year, the number of members and grants increases. But Black Fret doesn’t cut a check and leaves them hanging. They allocate the funds as needed for studio time, equipment needs, promotion, etc. The organization also provides counseling and membership from an industry leader on how best to spend that money.
This year, Black Fret will award $250,000 in grants to member-selected Austin artists at the annual Black Ball. The event feels like a “concert mix tape”. The Moody stage is split into two sections, each artist gets a side. While artist A is performing, the opposite side of the stage is being set up for Artist B. And back and forth it goes. It’s extraordinary to watch as it always goes without a hitch. 18 of the 20 nominated artists will perform at the event making the Black Ball an incredible showcase of the best of Austin music.
And the Winners of Austin Black Fret Black Ball 2022 Are…
On Saturday, December 3rd, the following artists will receive a combined $250,000 to be used to enhance and grow their music careers:
- Abhi the Nomad
- Annabelle Chairlegs
- Aubrey Hays
- Bonnie Whitmore
- Buffalo Nichols
- Daniel Fears
- Graham Weber
- Indoor Creature
- Jo James
- Me Nd Adam
- Money Chicha
- Natalie Price
- Nik Parr and The Selfless Lovers
- Pussy Gilette
- Quentin and the Past Lives
- Scott Strickland
- Urban Heat
Sounds Rad. I’m In! Hit Me With the Deets!
Black Ball 2022 takes place on Saturday, December 3rd at the Moody Theater, doors at 6:00 for members. Black Ball is a private event for members, guests, sponsors, and former winners. But if you’re dying to attend, there’s an easy way: become a member! Membership tiers can be found at blackfret.org/join and will grant you instant access to the Ball. Not only do gain access to an incredible evening of music, but your social calendar will also be full for the coming year. I’ve been attending Black Fret events and showcases for years and some of my most treasured ATX music experiences came from those performances.
Whether you sign up as a member or donate to the cause (http://blackfret.org/donate), you’re doing an immeasurable service to the Austin music community and positively impacting the careers of dozens of artists. You can’t call Austin the “Live Music Capital of the World” without a vibrant ecosystem to support that claim and organizations like Black Fret are doing what they can to keep the beat bumping in the ATX.
And in the end, Black Ball is a party. A homecoming where music lovers and artists combine to celebrate an amazing year of creativity, positivity, and musical magic. It’s one of my personal highlights of the year and I hope it becomes one of yours as well.
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