Ferndale Music Festival Aims for TV Show

One-day event to feature more than two dozen acts


Published:

PHOTOGRAPH BY TOM PARR, COURTESY OF THE WHISKEY CHARMERS

Last year, Laith Al-Saadi, a rock and blues artist from Ann Arbor, made his mark on national television when he reached the final four in NBC singing competition The Voice. Now, Michael Benghiat — founder, executive producer, and organizer of The Front Porch, a one-day neighborhood music festival coming to Ferndale this month — says the inaugural, family-friendly event will help local music listeners find “the Laith Al-Saadis of Michigan before they become the Laith Al-Saadis of The Voice.”

Inspired by Porchfest in Ithaca, New York, the festival — which will serve as a launch pad for a new music TV show of the same name — will take place on 25 porches within walking distance of downtown Ferndale and feature more than two dozen folk, blues, jazz, and country acts. Porch space is donated by homeowners, and artists in the festival’s lineup are volunteering their time and talents with the goal of reaching a new audience.

“It’s our hope that maybe you’ll see the next rising star to come out of either southeastern Michigan or the state of Michigan,” Benghiat says.

The Whiskey Charmers, a Walled Lake-based gothic country band; Anthony Retka, a singer-songwriter from Mount Clemens; and Aston Neighborhood Pleasure Club, a Ferndale-based traditional New Orleans jazz band, are expected to perform. Each act will have a half-hour to play.

Throughout the day, Benghiat and his business partner, music journalist Gary Graff, will be working with a film crew to create a pilot episode spotlighting the performances and artists. The duo’s TV show, which they hope to debut on a local station, will feature interviews with up-and-coming Michigan bands and musicians as they perform on porches in their hometowns.

“We want to show there is strong interest in this concept,” Benghiat says. “It can certainly make for a viable TV program.”


The Front Porch will take place June 24 and is open to the public at no cost. For more information, visit facebook.com/frontporchmi.
Edit Module
Edit Module Edit ModuleShow Tags

Archive »Related Content

Mustang Fever!

The iconic 'pony car' marks its 50th anniversary

Earth Tones: Recycling Latex Paint

The Southeastern Oakland County Resource Recover Authority (SOCRRA) has teamed with Battle Creek-based ePaint Recycling to help divert latex paint from the waste stream.

Bigger Than Ever

Former 'underground party' now fills the Masonic Temple.

Is it Time for a New Nickname for 'The Wolverine State'?

Despite our moniker and U-M’s mascot, ‘The Wolverine State’ seems to be weasel words

Wall to Wall Art

Park West Gallery and Dearborn's The Henry team up to decorate a 'boutique' hotel
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. An Animated Life
    As Rob Paulsen prepares to publish his memoir, the Hollywood veteran and voice behind some of the...
  2. An Hour With ... Teddy Dorsette III
    President, Detroit Black Deaf Advocates
  3. State of the Arts
  4. A New Noodle Shop on the Block
    Midtown Detroit welcomes Urban Ramen
  5. Gold Standard
    Tucked into an industrial strip in Ann Arbor, a new restaurant offers French fare
  6. In Tune
    Influenced by its storied past, Willis Show Bar sets the tone for a nostalgic sound
  7. Drink Beer, Do Good
    Local breweries and pubs jump on the charity bandwagon
  8. Recipe: Roast Boneless Pork Loin With Tart Cherry Chutney
    Executive chef at Ford’s Garage, Darin Thompson’s boneless pork loin marvel
  9. Business Class
    Trim suits, creative layers, and crisp white shirts - Fall's wardrobe essentials are fitting for...
  10. Woah, Deli!
    Rocco’s Italian Deli offers classic sandwiches with a fresh, Detroit twist