sxsw music

Music
11:24 am
Fri March 21, 2014

How Bands Recover From Having Their Gear Stolen

Austin's Driver Friendly had their gear stolen during South by Southwest this year.
Carmen Martinez Fischer, facebook.com/driverfriendly

Update: Looks like Driver Friendly finally caught a break: the Austin-based band had their trailer full of missing gear returned to them this morning. 

"At 8:30 this morning an Austin Police Officer knocked on Jeremi's door notifying him that they had found our trailer WITH EVERYTHING IN IT!!!" the band says on Facebook. "We cannot believe this turn of events, and feel so blessed to not only have everything back, but to have been supported by, you, our fans, through all of this."

All the funds Driver Friendly raised online to cover their missing gear will be returned to fans.  

Original story (March 19): A band that calls Austin home can’t seem to catch a break.

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SXSW
11:58 am
Tue March 19, 2013

Lessons From SXSW 2013: Take The Middle Road

Natalie Maines (center) at Central Presbyterian Church in Austin, Texas during the SXSW Music Festival. Maines's band included her father, Lloyd Maines (seated left) and Ben Harper (seated right).
Mindy Best Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 10:48 am

That guy Prince has a sense of humor.

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SXSW
6:17 am
Mon March 18, 2013

SXSW Film: These Finnish Rockers Have 'The Punk Syndrome' (Update)

Pertti Kurikka's Name Day members Sami and Kari strike a pose.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Update: "The Punk Syndrome" won the SXGlobal Audience Award. See pictures from the Pertti Kurikan Nimipäivät concert, below.

Original Story  (March 15, 6:01 a.m.): A punk band from Finland is the focus of a film that’s showing at South by Southwest this week. The band is also playing a gig in the SXSW Music festival.

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SXSW
3:45 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Three Days of Free SXSW Music at Auditorium Shores Starts Tonight

The SXSW crowd at Auditorium Shores in 2012.
Extreme Airshots/SXSW

Free concerts at Auditorium Shores, a South by Southwest tradition, start this evening.

They get going at 5 p.m. with Jovanotti, followed by Bajofondo, Molotov, and then Café Tacuba at 8 p.m., all presented by NPR Music.

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SXSW
3:26 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Photos: Dave Grohl Delivers SXSW Music's Keynote Address

Dave Grohl spoke about the forces that inspired him to rock at South by Southwest Music today.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News\

At Austin’s South by Southwest Music conference this morning, Foo Fighters frontman and former Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl gave the annual keynote address.

Dismissing any state-of-the-industry somberness, Grohl offered his life story as a blueprint for kids who want to grow up playing music.

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SXSW
2:47 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

From Doritos to Playtex to the Fader Fort, the SXSW Question Is: What Brand Are You? (Update)

A pedicabber moves SXSW Interactive passengers with his Oreo-branded cab.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Update: With South by Southwest Music in full swing, throngs of music fans have descended upon Austin. And that gives marketers more crowds to pitch their products and experiences to.

"The whole experience is more like social media,” says GSD&M’s Matthew Childs. "It’s not to actually sell something. It’s to get people talking about you, to position your brand with the Venturi effect of the community at South By. If you’re inauthentic to the community, you’re going to get called out pretty quickly."

Companies attempting to ingratiate themselves to the SXSW community have been on display all week: everything from the edgy (like HBO’s Game of Thrones pedicabs) to the decidedly less so (brands like Oreo and Cap’n Crunch advertising at SXSW Interactive).

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SXSW
9:09 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Photos: Rockers at the Paramount for Dave Grohl's 'Sound City'

"Sound City" director Dave Grohl will give the SXSW Music keynote speech this morning.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Nirvana drummer and Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl was at the Paramount Theater yesterday for the South by Southwest screening of his new film "Sound City".

The documentary features the famed LA studios of the same name, where Nirvana, Queens of the Age, Rage Against the Machine and hundred of other bands recorded albums.

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SXSW
6:30 am
Thu March 14, 2013

At South By Southwest, A 71-Year-Old Guitarist Makes A Belated Debut

At age 71, nearly 50 years after his first album, guitarist Harry Taussig is releasing a follow-up — and making his concert debut at South by Southwest.
Jacob Margolis for NPR

Originally published on Fri March 15, 2013 11:42 am

This week, about 2,000 bands from around the world are performing at various venues throughout Austin, Texas, for the South by Southwest music festival. Many of the musicians are young and have had plenty of experience performing in public.

And then there's guitarist Harry Taussig, who is nearly 72 years old. On Thursday, he'll be performing live for the first time ever.

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SXSW
11:59 am
Tue March 12, 2013

The RSVP Economy: SXSW, Marketing and Your Email

SXSW 2012 attendees lined up to get into a unofficial, RSVP-required party. RSVP services will now automatically register customers for dozens of parties.
Jeff Heimsath for KUT News

If you’ve ever attended South by Southwest, then you know: Invitations to private events come fast and furious, and it’s hard to keep on top of them.

That’s where RSVPster comes in. It charges customers 30 to 40 bucks to respond to invitations to unofficial events during the SXSW Interactive and Music conferences. Though it’s the company’s third festival, founder Jennifer Sinski says it’s gotten its fair share of criticism since the service started.

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SXSW
10:25 am
Tue March 5, 2013

The Mix: The Austin 100

Molly Hamilton of Widowspeak is one of the 100 acts with songs in our annual SXSW sampler.
Loren Wohl for NPR

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 2:03 pm

Audio for The Austin 100 is no longer available.

It says a lot about SXSW's size and scope that this "sampler" of the annual music festival spans six and a half hours, but here we are: 100 songs by 100 artists worth discovering at this year's big event.

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SXSW
1:13 pm
Fri February 22, 2013

The Good Listener: Do I Come To SXSW If I Don't Have A Badge Or A Billion Dollars?

Whether you buy a $795 badge or show up with a little spare cash on hand, SXSW has something for you — and will expect you to stand in line at some point.
Katie Hayes Luke for NPR

Originally published on Thu March 6, 2014 7:06 am

[This story originally ran on Feb. 22, 2013, but still applies today.]

We get a lot of mail at NPR Music, and amid the Valentine's Day cards that got returned with no forwarding address is a slew of smart questions about how music fits into our lives — and, this week, how music fans could and should approach SXSW, the gigantic music festival held every March in Austin, Texas.

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SXSW
9:55 am
Wed January 23, 2013

Nick Cave to Kick Off NPR Music's SXSW Showcase

Cat Stevens Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed January 23, 2013 9:54 am

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Austin
10:17 am
Tue January 8, 2013

Want a 'Free' SXSW Badge? (One Catch - You Have to Volunteer)

A musician jams out at SXSW 2012.
KUT News

Here's a wakeup call: the South by Southwest Music, Film and Interactive festivals are just about two months away.

If you want to be part of the action – but don't want to shell out the money for a badge – you can volunteer.

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Austin
12:52 pm
Mon August 27, 2012

GrulkeFest to Celebrate Brent Grulke's Impact on Austin Music

Grulke is credited with progressing Austin's music scene.
Courtesy SXSW

Tickets go on sale this afternoon for a music event being held in honor of a beloved member of the Austin music community.

SXSW Music Creative Director Brent Grulke passed away August 13 at the age of 51.

GrulkeFest is September 8 at ACL Live at The Moody Theater. Tickets start at $20 – proceeds will go to an education fund for Grulke’s seven-year-old son.

The line-up for the festival includes Doctors’ Mob, the Reivers and Wild Seeds.

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Arts and Culture
6:07 pm
Mon August 13, 2012

SXSW Music Creative Director Passes Away

Photo by KUT News

The Creative Director for South by Southwest Music has died. Brent Grulke died this morning from surgical complications.

Grulke had worked at SXSW since its launch in 1987. He became the music festival's creative director in 1994.

In a 2005 interview with KUT's Jennifer Stayton, Grulke explained the best way to enjoy SXSW and not feel intimidated by the festivals mammoth lineup of bands.

"I always tell people that if there are a couple things that they really want to see - just find a couple of things that you really want to see," he said. 

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SXSW
11:07 am
Mon March 19, 2012

With Grit And Polish, Hip-Hop Comes Of Age At SXSW

Nas performs his classic 1994 album, Illmatic, on stage at the Moody Theater in Austin, Texas during the 2012 SXSW music conference.
Heather Kennedy/WireImage Getty Images

Originally published on Thu November 8, 2012 3:36 pm

"I do music for women," said Timbaland, onstage at the Parish in Austin, Texas on Thursday afternoon to debut tracks from his as-yet-untitled and unfinished new album, likely coming this fall. "Y'all determine everything," he added, gesturing at a hoop earring-clad fan standing at the lip of the stage.

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SXSW
12:20 pm
Fri March 16, 2012

SXSW Late Night Dispatch: Thursday

The paint-splattered members of Venezuelan rock band La Vida Boheme won over NPR Music's team on the second day of the SXSW festival in Austin, Texas.
Katie Hayes Luke for NPR

Originally published on Fri March 16, 2012 9:30 am

Day two for NPR Music's team at South By Southwest started on a high note and hardly ever flagged. After the Wednesday night showcase ran to the wee hours of the morning, Thursday's opening event, a keynote address by Bruce Springsteen, didn't start until after noon, local time.

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SXSW
10:16 am
Thu March 15, 2012

SXSW Late Night Dispatch: Wednesday

Brittany Howard of Alabama Shakes won over the crowd at Stubbs — as well as NPR Music's crew — during the band's set at SXSW in Austin, Texas.
Katie Hayes Luke for NPR

Originally published on Thu March 15, 2012 9:45 am

For the NPR Music crew in Austin, Texas, Wednesday night was the official launch of South By Southwest 2012. But it wasn't really the start: SXSW has grown so much that Tuesday night acts as a warmup lap for the big event.

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AM Update
8:22 am
Wed March 14, 2012

AM Update: The Boss Speaks Tomorrow, Federal Funds to Fight Homelessness, County Workers Get a Raise

Bruce Springsteen is this year's SXSW Music keynote speaker.
Photo courtesy Craig O'Neal, flickr.com/36703550@N00

Springsteen Delivering Keynote at SXSW Music

Need another sign South by Southwest Music is underway? 

Bruce Springsteen will give his SXSW keynote speech tomorrow at the Austin Convention Center, noon.  KUT will stream the talk live, and later than night, Bruce Springsteen and his E Street Band will perform in Austin via a special ticket drawing.

You can follow KUT’s continuing SXSW coverage on this blog and at kut.org.

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SXSW
2:05 pm
Tue March 13, 2012

Cotton Mather's 'Kontiki,' The Album That Won't Go Gently

Cotton Mather (from left): Dana Myzer, Josh Gravelin, Whit Williams and Robert Harrison.
Todd Wolfson Courtesy of Fanatic Promotion

Originally published on Thu March 15, 2012 12:44 pm

More than a decade ago, an album came out recorded mostly on cassette in a house, never released on a major label — and until last month it had been out of print for almost that long. When Noel Gallagher of Oasis heard it, he declared it "amazing," and The Guardian called it "the best album The Beatles never recorded."

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