Review by: Mac M.
Photos by: Brent Baxter Photography

The festival kicked off on a Friday this year and as somewhat of a recent tradition rain drops decided to come out as well with far too many +1’s. 35 Denton organizers are smart however and know to start things indoors on the first day and it worked out well keeping everyone dry!

Jas Patrick out of Nashville by way of Houston kicked off music at the PAAC (Greater Denton Arts Council) as fest goers and media alike made their way inside to grab wristbands and other credentials. Even the guys from Cinderblock Sessions showed up early to catch Jas’ live set. They actually jumped in the van with him and his manager on their last leg of the drive from Nashville riding shotgun from Dallas to Denton for an exclusive session they were filming called “Jas Patrick On the Road to 35 Denton”!

Patrick’s live set grabbed a lot of attention considering it’s not everyday you see a guy playing drums with his feet while riffing leads and chords on his strat and singing all at the same time! Songs off his newest EP back to his first album were in the set list along with a couple of fun covers that all amped the crowd up to #festsohard for the rest of the evening!

After some tacos, beers and ring toss over at Rusty Taco we made our way out to the Harvest House next.

So Cal’s The Brevet brought their “Epic Americana” sound to the awesome outdoor lounge garden off E Hickory. Aric Chase Damm, Michael Jones, David Aguiar and Ben Ross made the long run from Cali to Texas for their 35D appearance this year. High energy mixed with a roots rock sound kept the crowd sticking around and interested. The band’s spring tour kicks off on April 17th in Anaheim.

We had planned to stick around for Jonas Martin at 10pm but the schedule was pushed forward a little due to the simple fact things change and it’s a normal part of organizing a music festival.

Our final stop for day one was at Lone Star Taps and Caps for Vanessa Peters’ live set. Her trio style band featured Nick Earl on electric, producer Rip Rowan on his custom synth/drum rig (yes, he plays keys left hand and drums with his right at once) and Vanessa on acoustic and vocals. Although Taps and Caps were somewhat a last minute venue added to 35 Denton this year and a later set time plenty of people came out to support Vanessa’s 45 minute set including the guys from Cinderblock and even J Paul Slavens spotted in the crowd.

Day one in the books for us and no doubt 35 Denton has figured out the art to making a local small town inspired music festival worth every bit of national attention it receives!

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