Denton Music Town Hall Meeting

Last Friday local DIY music and arts activist Christopher Cotter called everyone in the music scene out by creating the Denton Music Town Hall meeting. His point is simple: he wants everyone to come together to discuss the difficulties we are facing and to work through any issues that arise. 

"With the closure of Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios, The ‘ol dirty basement at J&J’s Pizza, Hailey’s, and Banter Coffee Shop, Denton’s music scene is suffering," a press release written by Cotter says. "There are fewer venues and the only options for the under 21 crowd have become largely limited to unsafe spaces and house venues. With the closure of Rubber Gloves and Hailey’s specifically, Denton has lost important and attractive spaces for not only the community at large, but also nationally touring acts."

Denton has no doubt felt the change creeping up for some time. Now that we've all faced the reality of it by seeing multiple venues close, meeting together to discuss what is going on and how we can creatively solve problems together seems like the most productive way to keep it progressive and continue to move forward.

"As a community, we have to find the answers in each other," the press release says. "We must pull together to discuss and execute potential solutions that address the issue of limited venues while maintaining the culture of a diverse and safe music scene. It’s important that the conversation happen among musicians and music lovers alike, regardless of preferred style or scene. These losses have limited the platforms that artists use to communicate their ideas to the world."

The Facebook event was created on August 11 and went public on August 12. Since then, Cotter has been responding to a myriad of confusion. As of today, there are 279 people RSVP'd to the event.

"I organized this meeting so that we could come together to deal with problems in our artist community in new a creative ways," Cotter says. "By working together and unifying though what makes us different nothing can stand in the way."

So, how does this all work? Since I was asked to be on the panel, I figured I would help my best to make this clear for anyone reading this who has questions. 

Date: Monday, August 22, 2016.
Location: Patterson-Appleton Arts Center (the building everyone refers to as "the GDAC"). The PAAC is located at 400 E. Hickory Street.
Time: 6:00 pm - 9:30 pm

Can't be there? Don't worry. The Dentonite will be recording the entire thing through Facebook Live and we will have a dedicated Live Tweeter. Follow #DentonMusicTownHall on Twitter during the discussion. 

Here is an organizational breakdown:

6:00 pm - 6:30 pm: Panel introduction. Each panel member will introduce themselves and state their biggest concern and/or solution to a concern within a 2 minute timeframe.
6:30 pm - 8:30 pm: Main discussion. Panel will lead the discussion as brought up by the group. Group will speak, panel will give responses that will be 1-2 minutes long.
8:30 pm - 9:30 pm: Conclusion. Panel members to come up with conclusions and compromise for realistic solutions. Community can add to solutions as panel discusses. 

Panel Members:
Chris Flemmons, Founder of 35 Denton
Michael Briggs, Civil Recording / Macaroni Island
Andi Harman, DIYactivist, music journalist, former art director for 35 Denton
Rob Buttrum, local DIY arts activist, Filth
Josh Baish, Owner of Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios
Dr. Michael Seman, UNT Economics Research Group, Shiny Around the Edges
Sara Button, Co-Founder of The Dentonite, music journalist
Eric Pulido, Oaktopia Talent Buyer/Director, Midlake
Mindy Arendt, Thinline/ All the fests
Matt Farmer, calendar manager for J&Js Pizza
Keldrick Scott, Owner of Gitmo Music
Sashenka Lopez, KUZU radio board

Christopher Kent Cotter, 1919 Hemphill, Oaktipia, DFW DIY music & arts activist.


Header image design by Shaina Sheaff