Well yeehaw – the Necessary Monsters bandwagon rolls on. And we’ve just finished rollin’ on through the Fort Worth Stockyards, Texas.
A truly incredible venue, the Fort Worth Stockyards are home to a regular rotation of good time, Southern-style entertainment. We’re talking rodeos, country music shows, Wild West Shows and circuses. A whole new cultural experience for many of the Monsters – but new cultural experiences are our bread and butter.
Also the show we put on there was likely a new cultural experience for the good people of the Dallas – Fort Worth Metroplex.
When we travel to other cities and states, we aim to recreate events such as our first ever one-day festival in Portland, Oregon. Our day in Fort Worth was no exception. We were given enough space to have a number of different events and activities going on, and tried to give in a unique Southern spin. This included a chilli cook-off and a BBQ sauce contest! A lot of the Monsters are pretty good cooks and gave their best efforts, but some of the locals showed up with truly mind-blowing (and tongue burning) dishes and sauces. We learned a lot, and even picked up a few new recipes (from those willing to share their family secrets!).
The winners of both the chilli cook-off and the BBQ sauce contest agreed to take part in our “Skills-Swap” were they held a quick cookery class in how to make these incredible dishes. In return, they chose from amongst all the other “Skill-Swap” participants we had on the day. I believe one of them chose to have their hair braided (much to the amusement/embarassment of their teenage children) and the other spent some time at the kiln handmaking some mugs and plates they could then take home with them!
We had a children’s songwriting class, where we led local children to write a song over the course of 60 minutes, which would then be performed in the evening concert! This was a huge success, and we were blown away by the creativity and the sharing spirit of these young people. Many of them were already gifted in playing different instruments and those who weren’t took part either singing, playing drums or even helping at the mixing and lights desks! The children’s band (with support from some of us) played first in the evening and their song (a 9 minute opus!) was a big hit with all the crowds. There were even a few tears from proud moms and dads!
Then the Necessary Monsters supergroup took to the stage for what was our best gig yet! We had arrived in Fort Worth a few days before the show, and had a chance to practise with local lap steel guitar player Reggie McGraw. He joined us on stage for most of the gig, which was a treat for us, and an even bigger treat for his fans who were given a once in a lifetime chance to join him on stage and be part of the band! There were a lot of swooning women that night, let me tell you!
We want to give a big thanks to the kind hearts of the people of Texas. Even if you didn’t like our vegan chilli!
We’ll see y’all again soon!