Saddle up your Tauntaun. Denton is headed to Hoth.
Jonathan Baker calls Fort Worth home, but the Star Wars enthusiast is the guy behind No Hope for Alderaan, a production company that books music shows all over the Dallas-Fort Worth area. On Dec. 3-4, Baker and his company will stage Hoth Fest at Killer’s Tacos, 424 Bryan St.
For the uninitiated (or just the casual consumer of all things Star Wars): Hoth is the icy planet where the leaders of the Rebel Alliance would gather in The Empire Strikes Back. And Alderaan is the home of Princess Leia and a key player in the creation of the Rebel Alliance.
“I was an ’80s baby,” Baker said. “My mom is the one who grew up with the movies, and she made sure I could watch them on VHS. Why do I love Star Wars? It’s just the story. When I was a kid, it was the light sabers and space — and a scary villain. But as you grow up some, and they introduce more stuff, it’s the story that makes you come back.”
Baker said he never gets tired of the franchise. He watched the more recent films as they’ve been released.
“If I’ve had a bad day at work, I’ll come home and watch Star Wars and eat some pizza. Even the new stuff. You don’t make a franchise without having something. It gets into you and becomes a part of your life. Sometimes I see something, and I’m like, ‘Do you hear yourself? You sound like the Empire.’”
But you don’t have to have an encyclopedic knowledge of the force to enjoy Baker’s galactic party. Just come (and wear a costume, if you want to, but be careful with that light saber).
Hoth Fest will have two performance spots, the Empire Stage and the Rebel Stage. The bands don’t have to cover any of the songs or motifs from the sprawling franchise soundtrack, but Baker said the musicians are welcome to riff on ”The Imperial March (Darth Vader’s Theme),” ”The Force Suite” or “Cantina Band,” the famous jazz track played by the big-headed Bith.
During Hoth Fest, attendees can enjoy Star Wars-themed cupcakes, and Baker said he might have The Empire Strikes Back playing in the backyard of the restaurant and bar. Attendees will see a lineup that mixes up sound, style and energy.
“It’s definitely a mixed-genre event,” Baker said. “We’ll have everything from acoustic acts to heavy metal and everything in between. It’s not genre exclusive. I find that putting a bunch of genres on one show together gets people to come out, and you reach more people that way.”
Past the festival, Baker is looking to join the ranks of label owner under the No Hope for Alderaan umbrella. Baker plays with two North Texas bands, drumming for a group called Forget Conformity and the instrumental outfit Aphasic, which is playing the festival.
Baker said Hoth Fest will be a success if the bands have fun and attendees enjoy the music and buy band merchandise.
“I felt like this was a good time to do it because of the COVID and the lockdown,” he said. “I felt like this would be a good way to introduce another fest toward the end of the year. People are ready to get out and enjoy themselves.”