By Billy Ludt
What happens when world-class musicians share the same venue as fashion designers and models? Fashion Meets Music Festival comes to life.
The second Fashion Meets Music Festival took place Sept. 5 and 6 in the Arena
District in Columbus, Ohio. It shut down a portion of Nationwide Boulevard and reached into McFerson Commons Park, and sat among the Arena District’s many businesses and restaurants.
FMMF aims to put Columbus on the map as a leader in music, fashion, dining, art and education.
Northern Whale, Youngstown’s own indie rock act, played Saturday afternoon at the FMMF. Northern Whale was on the same bill as acts like Ludacris, Young the Giant, O.A.R, St. Vincent, Awolnation and Taking Back Sunday.
Performing members of Northern Whale are vocalist Jake Capezzuto, drummer Brandon Fisher, guitarist Scott Davis and bassist and ukulele player Jake Stephens.
“We had a really good time,” Capezzuto said. “It was a lot of fun. I enjoy looking like a complete idiot on stage.”
As patrons entered the festival, Capezzuto and his bandmates stood by entryways and handed out cards to do some last-minute promotion for their set.
In light of the festival’s emphasis on fashion, Northern Whale made sure to take the stage dressed up, despite the weekend’s 90-degree temperatures.
“I gave up trying to look cool a couple years ago,” Capezzuto said. “If you’re trying to look cool you’re not going to have fun … I mean we tried to dress cool. I got white pants on, I figured Labor Day’s Monday, so this is my last chance to wear white pants.”
Three stages were set up for FMMF, each sponsored by separate companies — Jagermeister, Stella Artois and iHeartRadio — and a fashion tent with a runway.
This year, FMMF’s organizers placed an emphasis on consumer experience, bringing in dozens of vendors and food trucks for patrons to peruse. Melissa Dickson is the director of communications for FMMF.
“Our goal for FMMF 2015 is to bring music and fashion to life on a national stage, producing a community-based programming and destination-based entertainment platform in Columbus,” Dickson said.
Music could be heard at all times from every corner of FMMF. Events ran until 11 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, but official FMMF after parties were thrown each night in the Park Street complex.
Saturday, Ludacris flew in to Columbus to perform on the iHeartRadio stage at FMMF during his 10th annual, weekend-long charity celebration, LudaDay Weekend. Ludacris performed an hour set and promptly left, flying back to Atlanta to continue hosting LudaDay Weekend festivities.
St. Vincent, the Grammy’s best Alternative Artist of 2014, headlined the second day of FMMF, playing the final show of the Digital Witness Tour. The tour spanned two years and the band played around the world.
Though FMMF boasted a world-renowned lineup, the festival gave stage time to many up-and-coming and lesser-known acts, including Captain Kidd, a five-piece indie pop group made up of all Ohio State University students.
Next year’s FMMF will take place once again on Labor Day weekend. For more information on the festival, visit www.fmmf.us.