Historic Athens Porchfest: Beer, Music, and a Walk Through History

Local bands gather from around Athens - and farther - to be a part of a nice day of music and sun.

By Nicholson Feldman

October 16, 2019

Athens, GA - Sun beats down on the old wooden homes of the historic Athens neighborhood. Birds chirp their songs - an opening act for what's to come. As musicians gather endless bundles of cords, they practice and strum a couple more chords.

Historic Athens Porchfest is a beautiful gathering of those who enjoy music, and those who perform music. It was held this October in the neighborhoods surrounding Historic Athens, and attracts music lovers and musicians alike. The venues for the artists are porches of those who sign up to be “foster venues,” and people walk from porch concert to porch concert, enjoying the day with their friends and family.

This year, a local band from Gwinnett county, “Deaf Condors,” played their first concert to a public crowd. Their host, Jamie Bull, is an art professor at the University of Georgia, and is very supportive of local music. Her husband, a math professor at UGA, helped set up the event with the band. They provided a number of drinks as well to attract a crowd to the young band’s first concert.

“It’s very important to be supportive of musicians and artists,” Jamie says, “You never know when somebody could be the next big hit, one small act can take somebody very far.” Jamie signed up to help the festival get some speed, and encouraged all her students to come out and support.

Deaf Condors is a Peruvian rock band with currently only two members, Derrick Alvarez, who plays drums, and Bob Jesus Alvarez, who sings and plays guitar.

“It’s truly a blessing to have people offer a helping hand to get us started. When you first start out, it’s hard to get exposure, and even harder to book a venue when you don’t have a following. Historical Athens Porchfest helped us get our names out there and play for free on a nice porch,” Derrick says. “It was a blast. We couldn’t ask for sweeter and cooler porch hosts.”

The festival is also ran by Tweed Recording Audio Production Academy, a push to help students get experience in concert production, from cables to amps and from setting up to breaking down.

This was the first annual Historic Porchfest, and Historic Athens hopes and plans to have many more follow. Deaf Condors will be at the next concert, among many other bands who enjoyed playing this year.

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