We are about a month away from the epic Free Press Summer Fest! Get pumped and ready by listening to these awesome playlists our awesome Intern, Greg Cote, made for us. They include a little bit of every band (that was on Spotify) that will be playing the fest, especially the headliners. It’s the weekend. Play it loud.
Tag Archives: FPSF
As if you needed another reason. Grab your tickets now before they sell out!
Lauren Ignited: You have such a unique presence, what inspires you to perform?
LI: What was your #FPSF experience like?
T: I would hope that any Houston musician would see FPSF as a good thing for Houston. There are many amazing musicians in this city putting on equally amazing concerts, yet there is not a culture bread into the daily life of Houston that “Houston is a place for arts and music.” FPSF, for me, is the eye of the storm that will spread into this city that will hopefully give the local artist the respect and audience they deserve. Personally I felt wonderful performing during FPSF. I could hear my voice lift into the air and touch down and bounce off a distant downtown street and again ricochet off the surrounding buildings, and our crowd seemed just as transported as me. LI: How did you prepare for the show?
T: Well because of my Theater background I have a very strict routine, but that continuously de-rails because I always have to talk to people and direct all the people that make up our show. Mostly I like to be in silence or practicing my vocal warm ups. I become very disengaged in conversation. One might call it getting in the zone. LI: Tell me more about the booth you had set up at FPSF. How long have you been selling collars and what’s the story there?
T: Haha, well my wife Gunjen Mittal is the repurposing Queen. She loves to take ordinary household things and turn them into art or jewelry. This year we tried out collar necklaces at our booth, a very new thing Gunjen started working on. The booth itself is a representation of everything we do, whether it’s Yoga, Handmade Jewelry, Sustainable Living Practices or Music, there is so much we want to offer to the world around us, so we were there spreading awareness about that.
Check out the Lauren Ignited photo coverage of #FPSF here.
Houston’s own, The Tontons, played Free Press Summer Fest Sunday afternoon to an adoring crowd. Unlike many of the touring bands, The Tontons had the chance to soak up the festival for both days and really explore and enjoy it. The caught Snoop Dogg, The Flying Guillotines and The Flaming Lips. Seeing The Flaming Lips was a big experience for Asli, lead singer of The Tontons: “I look up to them and the level of positivity they bring to their music.”
The Tontons are currently working on releasing 7inch tracks from their work-in-progress, upcoming album. Releasing an album takes a lot of energy, time, editing, and more. So, The Tontons are taking a different approach with this album, and a really great one, if I may say so myself. The entire band is taking a month long retreat to a ranch to isolate themselves from distractions and focus on their album. They will write, rehearse, and hash out all the details surrounded by nature, soaked in inspiration and creativity. Hopefully they’ll take a photo shoot or two while they are up there too!
We chatted a bit about the Houston music scene and I asked them how it felt to be a part of the music community. All the Houston bands I have met are composed of people I am proud to know. I was curious if there was any behind the scenes nonsense or rivalries that The Tontons had come across and I was happy to know that is not the case. “There is not really a lot of competition that I see. We support other bands and they support us.” Houston has a great music scene and The Tontons are certainly an integral part of that scene. Check them out the next time you can; I’m sure you’ll love them.
Check out the full Lauren Ignited photo coverage of #FPSF here.
Currently on tour, UME made a stop through Free Press Summer Fest for a punk driven and electrofying yet sweet sounding set. They have played their fair share of festivals and shared the stage with the likes of Mission of Berma, Cursive and The Meat Puppets. When asked what it was like to meet and play alongside great acts and innovators of punk, they mentioned first how down to earth and nice they all were and that “they are regular people, they just work their butts off.” Which, maybe for a punk band, that’s a little big of an image ruiner, but if that’s not the case, I have to mention how sweet and nice UME was as well.
I asked them how FPSF compares to the countless festivals they have played as a band and their reaction was wonderful. “It’s really cool that Houston has a festival like this. It feels very independent and the growth from putting on shows to building an entire festival is great to see.”
Check out the full Lauren Ignited photo coverage of #FPSF here.
Without a doubt, Willie Nelson was high on the list of bands to see for the festival attendees at Free Press Summer Fest. His quiet presence was greeted with adoring eyes, giant smiles, and lyrics sung loudly in joy. Braids and bandanas were worn with Texas pride.
Willie’s battered and beaten guitar showed signs of life: weathered wood, signatures and even a hole beneath the strings. I wondered where else that guitar had traveled. What crowds it had seen. I took a moment to sit and listen. To really watch Willie Nelson play guitar. To listen to him share stories in a way that is so quickly (and sadly) becoming the past.
It’s easy to imagine that I was not the only one in awe this past Sunday at Eleanor Tinsley Park. There was one fan in the audience in particular who clearly did everything she could to get to the spot she wanted: front row. She sang along, jumped up against the guardrail, threw her hands in the air with her red bandana and braids swinging along to the beat of her happiness. Then, the unimaginable happened. As Willie left the stage, he threw his bandana to the crowd. Right in front of her. As she went to grab it, so did one of the security guards working the photography pit area. She had one end tightly in her hand but the other end was held by the security guard. She pleaded with him. She looked at him straight in the eye and yelled out “pleeeeease” in such an honest tone that he didn’t even say a word. He just let go. She immediately fell to the ground in tears of joy. Her friends could be heard saying, “let her cry.” For they knew what a significant moment this was for her. A defining moment, a moment this fan will remember for years and years to come happend for her at Free Press Summer Fest this year. “And come whatever happens now, ain’t nice to know that dreams still come true. I’m so glad that I was close to you, for a moment of forever.” – Willie Nelson
Nearly 100,000 people walked, biked or rode their way over to Eleanor Tinsley Park this past weekend for the 2012 edition of Free Press Summer Fest. This seven stage festival provided two days full of music spanning a long list of genres, art, food, and for the fancy pants in the crowd, AC. I ventured off to the festival by myself with my media wristband in tow but, I was surely not alone: I literally ran into a friend everywhere I went. And every time, it put the biggest smile on my face. Just another reason I call Houston, home.
I was lucky enough to have one of the best experiences of my life: meeting and interviewing bands, meeting fans, seeing friends and getting up close to headliners that I deeply respect. I couldn’t have had any of these moments without the amazing, hard working folks that plan, coordinate, run and volunteer for Free Press Summer Fest. Over the next few days, I’ll release my interviews and some amazing moments from the weekend. There are too many words to chose from, so instead, I leave you with this pic. Thank you, Free Press, for an amazing weekend.