CENTRAL TRACK TIP JAR ARTICLE
If festivals like the twice-annual Untapped series have taught us anything, it’s that craft beer and music are just kind of made for each other. So, naturally, bands like Mothership and Jessie Frye have gotten brews named after them in recent years. Hell, the Toadies just released their third and fourth beer collabs with Fort Worth’s Martin House Brewing Company.
And, this weekend, those ranks will grow by a dozen when Martin House and local music promoter 13th Floor Music join forces for a new dry-hopped wheat called Tip Jar. Not just a “hoppy, smooth, and groovy summertime beer,” Tip Jar will also feature the names of a dozen DFW bands on its cans — Rise & Shine, Vincent Neil Emerson, Natural Anthem, Chucho, Matt Tedder, Kirk Thurmond & The Millennials, Atlantis Aquarius, The Hazardous Dukes, Shotgun Friday, The Paychecks, J. Charles & the Trainrobbers and Charley Crockett.
On top of introducing the DFW music scene to a new, easy-drinking light beer, 13th Floor Music’s Ken Welker says what he’s really hoping to accomplish is the opposite — introducing those in the die-hard craft beer scene to a dozen kickass local bands.
“Where I was introduced to a lot of the music scene was through working with Fishfry Bingo, which became Shotgun Friday,” Welker says. “They have a huge tie to the beer community. It’s really through that that I started looking through that lens — the beer community has almost a cult following. Die-hard beer people latch onto things. Just like I consume myself with music, they consume themselves with beer knowledge. Similarly, anything that pops up on their radar through that beer community, they’re often really, really receptive to. I love that about that whole scene. I saw that those beer people often didn’t have a favorite band — Shotgun Friday is the only one that plays at all of [the breweries]. So they are die-hard Shotgun Friday fans. I thought it would be a cool way to introduce them to the local music scene.”
For now, he’ll have to hope that throwing all of their names on one can will get that done. In the future, though, Welker says that if the beer proves popular enough around town, he’d love to see each of the mentioned bands getting shine via their own individual labels.
“If it comes out and does really well, eventually I’d love for the next evolution of it to be like when an X-Men movie comes out and you get a different Slurpee with each X-Man on it,” he says. “That would be cool to be cool to do a series thing. Due to cost — there’s an expense for every label that you submit for approval to the state, and all that stuff — we wanted to go an efficient way the first round.”
As for the beer itself, Welker worked with the folks at Martin House to make sure Tip Jar would be something musicians themselves wouldn’t mind drinking. Realizing that many a broke local musician relies on the free Lone Stars, PBRs and the like that most bars just give them on nights when they play, he decided to keep things as light as possible.
“A lot of these musicians are used to drinking shit beer all the time, so they don’t have a palate for some of the stronger-flavored beers,” Welker says. “I wanted something really palatable for musicians, because that’s how you end up with these guys drinking it onstage.”
Chances are, you’ll see plenty of these guys doing just that at the Fort Worth Flying Saucer this Saturday, August 13, when 11 of the 12 bands (minus Charley Crockett) will perform at Tip Jar’s official release party. A Dallas release party will see Crockett and 10 other Tip Jar bands performing at The Rustic on Sunday, September 4.