Alumni plan new Fort Worth music festival


Live music fans can come out Saturday for their first look at one of the newest additions to the Fort Worth music scene, the Clearfork Music Festival.

But for the organizers, recent TCU graduates Kevin Benson, Bryan Lee and Nick Daniels, Saturday will be the finale to months of planning.

Twenty-five artists and musicians are scheduled to perform on three stages at the Heart of the Ranch at Clearfork, beginning at 1 p.m. Sept. 21.

The new festival is presented by Keep Texas Live, an event blog started by Benson and Lee to inform students and residents of the DFW area about what is happening in the local music scene.

“We have a great live music scene,” Benson said, “but it hasn’t been accepted as much by everyone.”

The Clearfork Music Festival is unique because it is centered around all things local, he said.

“Everything we’ve been doing from stage rentals to tables and chairs to power to ice,” Benson said. “Everything has been rented locally.”

The featured musicians are almost all from the Fort Worth area.

“We might have larger scale music festivals in Fort Worth, but they don’t focus on Fort Worth’s talent musically. They bring in outside artists most of the time,” Benson said.

“For this, 95 percent of the musicians are from Fort Worth or the Fort Worth area, so we are taking the best of the best of Fort Worth and giving them a larger stage to reach out to the community.”

Keep Texas Live has partnered with the Fort Worth Bike Sharing Program to promote the Clearfork Music Festival through discounted “Bike Share + General Admission” tickets and other special offers.

“You can ride up on your bike, and you get a discounted ticket,” Benson said. “There will be a station right there for you to park your bike and come into the festival.”

Clearfork is not the first event these alumni have thrown in hopes of encouraging TCU students' involvement in the live music scene.

The three alumni helped start the West Berry Block Party, a one-day event featuring 48 bands at multiple venues on Berry Street in 2011.

“As Berry Street has kind of died off and bars have closed, we kind of outgrew it,” Benson said, “and that’s where we are with the Clearfork Festival.”

Some of the musicians who performed at the Berry Street venue two years ago are scheduled to take the stage at Clearfork.

“The first West Berry Block Party was my first show I ever did in a band,” Riley Knight, TCU alumnus and lead singer of We’rewolves, said. “We played at Friday on the Green two months ago, but this very well has the potential to be the biggest crowd we’ve played to.”

We’rewolves is scheduled to play on the Goose Island Stage at Clearfork at 5 p.m. on Saturday. Benson said the music festival will go until midnight.

The folk-rock band He’s My Brother, She’s My Sister headlines the event at 8 p.m.

A full schedule of the Clearfork Festival, ticket information and directions can all be found on the festival website and Facebook page.