All Aboard the 2017 Whistlestop Music Festival

In the North Texas area, there’s an ever-growing scene of local musicians creating and developing their skills. In support of this, last October the Frisco Music Scene hosted the inaugural Whistlestop Jamboree with an all-day lineup of local talent, sponsored by area businesses. It was a huge success.

Drop by the Frisco Rail Yard this week and you’ll find a hustle of activity as the organizers prepare for a repeat…the second annual Whistlestop Music Festival! Yes, Whistlestop is back and if it were possible, it’s even better!

We know there’s a lot competing for your spare time in Frisco. Activities upon activities…events upon events. So why should you consider attending 2017 Whistlestop on October 21st?

5 Reasons to Board the Whistlestop Train 

#1 Live music is better than earbuds.

There’s a big difference between listening to music through your earbuds and watching a live performance. Singing along to some perfectly polished recorded tunes is great. We all love our favorite predictable melodies available at the click of a button.

There’s something really special, however, about experiencing the music live, in-the-moment, unpredictable and raw with a community of people. A live show leaves room for spontaneous, subtle changes and nuances. The venue, the mood and energy of the crowd along with the artists’ ever-evolving style, is an unpredictable and exciting combination.

#2 To support the Frisco Music Scene and local artists.

Frisco Music Scene, a nonprofit organization, is a collaboration of local musicians, venues, and community leaders dedicated to the nurturing of a distinct musical culture for our developing city.

Founding member and Frisco resident Jeff Brooks, of the popular Dallas-based bluegrass band The Bodarks, shared,

We started The Frisco Music Scene in an attempt to breathe some life into our local music culture.  One night I was talking with Matt Hinchey, guitarist for Mark Shelton & the Greater Good, and we both thought it strange that our bands play shows all around North Texas and Southern Oklahoma – everywhere BUT in Frisco, and yet we both live here! It was like a black hole in the map of the venues we play. Frisco is such a booming city, and it’s great for sports and shopping and housing, but there just wasn’t much showcasing and promoting local artists. So we launched the Frisco Music Scene to nurture a musical culture, and create opportunities for original artists to collaborate with each other, and with venues and music-related businesses.”

There’s some amazing local talent in and around Frisco, busy creating and developing their talent, in need of support and opportunity. Matt, who joined Jeff as a founder of the Frisco Music Scene, shared,

The Whistlestop Music Festival provides an opportunity for local musicians to get the exposure they desperately need. To make connections with fans of live, local music and to network with other musicians.”

Whistlestop will feature an entirely new roster of talent this year, while many of last year’s bands will be in attendance to support the new line-up. Event organizers try not to repeat the bands, but rather showcase new and different artists in need of opportunities to make connections with fans of local music. That’s what every artist wants…for their craft to be seen, heard, experienced and enjoyed.

#3 The Headliners have Frisco ties.

Whistlestop has 2 headliners this year, both national acts, but with Frisco ties. Fan favorite Uncle Lucius, and Frisco-native Dalton Domino. Uncle Lucius just announced they’ll finish out their tour this year, bringing a decade-long project to an end. Whistlestop is one of the last opportunities fans will have to catch a performance by this very talented band.

The headlining acts this year (and other prominent local bands) will close out the festival on the Air Repair Pro “Main Stage” Saturday evening.

#4 The Jamboree Band experiment is intriguing.

One of the unique features of the Whistlestop Music Festival is the “Jamboree Scramble,” an experiment of sorts in which local musicians are randomly shuffled into ad-hoc bands.
Artists of different ages, styles, and backgrounds are mixed together,” says Jeff. “You might end up with a punk-rock drummer with a bluegrass fiddler and a pop vocalist.  You never know what the experiment might turn up.” 

The Jamboree bands are comprised of musicians from around D/FW,” added Matt. “Some may be full-time musicians, while others have full time day jobs, but are talented and enjoy making music.”

 The FMS committee (literally) puts the names of each of the confirmed musicians in a hat and they are drawn per instrument/category into their respective bands. They are then notified of who their bandmates are so they can start planning and rehearsing.
Each of these scrambled bands prepares a half hour of original music and a few cross-genre covers to perform between each featured band’s show. The five scramble bands last year were fantastic. In fact, one of them, now called Sister Grove, has since remained together and will be performing as one of our featured bands this year.”

On the day of the festival, the Stan’s Main Street stage located at the south end of the Frisco Rail Yard will feature these Jamboree bands. The FMS crew checks in with the scramble bands preceding the event to see how things are going and the results have been nothing short of impressive.

#5 It’s Free!

Not only is this a great opportunity to enjoy the fall weather with your family, but the event is free! Frisco Music Scene is not in this to make money. They’re a non-profit organization, and this is purely for the love of live music and in support of Frisco community, business and culture.

To put on an event of this caliber required very generous contributions by local businesses,” said Jeff.  “All this is made possible by generous donations from Stan’s Main Street, as well as Air Repair Pros, J&S Paint & Body, Wolf Bain Distillery, Callahan’s Appliance, Prosco Automotive, Allstate Insurance (Jeff Baird, Danny Wilson, Scott Sandlin, & Aaron Wallick), and Hendrick Volkswagen of Frisco.  

The Frisco Rail Yard is the perfect location for a family-friendly festival, with food trucks, a bar, and games on hand to keep people entertained between sets.


Friday night, October 20, is the official pre-party at Stan’s Main Street, where sponsors, organizers, and last year’s bands come together to celebrate and thank all involved in the development of Whistlestop. Bands will perform acoustic sets and kick off what is sure to be a fantastic line up on Saturday!

Frisco Music Scene hopes to one day take over the city for a full weekend of music and celebration of local talent… So keep supporting their efforts, and stay tuned!