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Mansfield Magazine

Local Man Looks to Make Arlington a Major Music City

Feb 19, 2015 08:29AM ● By Kevin
Dave Conant has called Arlington home for nearly 25 years. With a lifelong interest and love for music - from punk to rock and jazz and anything in between - he hopes to show the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex just how awesome the music scene is right in its own backyard. He calls his endeavor "ArlingtoN NightS." The idea came about when the Super Bowl came to town in 2011.

"I knew everybody was going to be having a good time in Dallas and Fort Worth, not Arlington," he said. "So, I began to wonder what I could do to help get people interested in Arlington."

Conant studied music in college and "had pipe dreams of being a rockstar" when he was a teenager. So, the idea formed to get people out to live music events around town. Little did he know, he said, how much music was already prevalent until he started looking.

"I don't think a lot of the people in our area even realize where all the music is being played around town," he said. "I think going out, enjoying dinner and/or a drink with friends and family should be a part of everybody's plans, at least every couple of weeks, if not more. I have met so many good people doing this."

The main focus right now, Conant said, are his Facebook and Twitter presences. The main website also has an events calendar with Arlington's upcoming live music performances. Each afternoon, Conant tries to post what's going on in Arlington that night, but it's a lot to do in a one-man band.

"The website is not as current as I would like," he said. "I need to find people willing to help with writing the articles about the clubs and the bands. I plan on having a feature club and band for every month."

He's also working on T-shirts and other merchandise. This year should be busy, as Conant aspires for ArlingtoN NightS to be the go-to site for music in Arlington, and he wants everyone in the metroplex to know that. He wants the last weekend in September each year to be "ArlingtoN Fall Mega FesT"

"Last year we had the Cowboys in town, a Ranger home stand, Texas A&M vs. Arkansas, last weekend of live music at the Levitt, the South Street Art Festival, Pantego 2015, opening weekend of Fright Fest at Six Flags and Heritage Days at Knapp Park," Conant said. "If we could add live music to at least 50 plus places for the weekend, just think about what it could become in a couple of years."

In a few years, Conant hopes to see University of Texas at Arlington students become a bigger part of the music in town.

"They need to know where they can go play and enjoy the music," he said. "There is no need to go to Dallas or Fort Worth. The variety that is hidden here needs to be found in the next couple of years. We have country, hard rock (remember Pantera?), rap, blues and pop, and a large international scene here too. We have something for everybody."

Overall, Conant feels he has become a true "Arlingtonite." His passion for the city is where he draws his inspiration to help improve the community's entertainment scene.

"Lots of heart breaks and good times raising my family here," he said. "But now i feel I am old enough and maybe smart enough to help make something of myself and the community around me.

I believe great things can be done if we do not stop believing and do not ever give up. We have one life to live and I prefer not to waste it on the couch."

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