Photo by Jarrod Vrazel : zrock.com
Paul Lidell and Jason McMaster (of Dangerous Toys) perform with their new band Broken Teeth on opening night of SXSW.
Austin, Texas The 2004 edition of the SXSW Music Conference and Festival, one of the most highly anticipated industry events on the planet, starts today, Wednesday, March 17, and runs through Sunday, March 21. The conference and festival are career-shaping events that present a surfeit of opportunities for music entrepreneurs of all stripes and categories. Zrock will be on the scene is Austin to bring you highlights and exclusive interviews.
Internationally renowned musicians and music industry professionals from every facet of the business will be relating their wide-ranging experiences, showcasing their products and talents, and providing outstanding networking opportunities all within the Austin Convention Center. Outside the convention center, the SXSW Music Festival will feature 1100 musical performers on 58 stages. Activity surrounding the upcoming showcases has already begun in earnest with press releases touting the shows of the galaxy of new and established stars being circulated in voluminous quantities. As always, sxsw.com/music is the best, most up-to-date source of information on the shows, containing photos/bios of the artists as well as over 500 streaming audio samples from festival acts.
The 2004 SXSW Music Conference will feature over 70 panel discussions, interviews, demo listening sessions and workshops with 230 panelists enlightening conference participants. Highlights will include: Little Richard’s keynote speech on Thursday, March 18 at 10:30 a.m. and SXSW Interviews featuring Walter Yetnikoff, former head of CBS Records; Andrew Loog Oldham, former manager and producer of the Rolling Stones; and musicians Wayne Coyne of the Flaming Lips; Joan Baez; and Ani DeFranco. Panel topics will include: The New Function Of Record Labels, Finding The Grownup Audience, How To Audit Your Label, Mastering Engineers Talk Shop, The Unique Position of Major-Affiliated Indies, Publishers New Bond With Artists, and A&R And The Music Itself. Wednesday’s Crash Courses offer basic information at workshops and special panels which cover topics of interest to working musicians and aspiring music professionals alike. Rounding out the conference are Demo Listening sessions that offer registrants a chance to see how music is reviewed and reacted to by representatives from labels, venues, radio and the press and the Mentor Program offering registrants ten minute one-on-one meetings with panelists and industry pros. For updated information on panel topics, descriptions and speakers, access the SXSW website at www.sxsw.com.
The SXSW Trade Show Exhibition continues to broaden the wide range of events and exhibitors that participate. New additions this year include the Indie Village, hosted by Digital Rights Agency with 30 independent labels and their artists participating, and StudioSX sponsored by Talentmatch where high profile music industry professionals will be interviewed and audio-streamed on sxsw.com. The three day music trade show continues to offer a unique opportunity for the 1100 performing bands and thousands of other industry professionals to meet in one-on-one scenarios and exchange information. Participating organizations from around the world including Australia, Ireland, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Japan and from every corner of the United States can aid in broadening careers for both American and international bands and companies. Additionally, anyone needing to transact business while at the convention center, can go to the Sonicbids E-mail/Web Center and wireless lounge. To prepare for the evening ahead there are two excellent opportunities to sample the nighttime offerings – The Acoustic Daytime Stage and the Koss Showcasing Artist Listening Kiosk. The Acoustic Daytime Stage features acoustic sets from bands that will be playing at the nighttime music festival. The Koss Showcasing Artists Listening Kiosk features tapes and CDs from showcasing artists. An attraction for all performing bands is the ASCAP Showcasing Artist Lounge – a great place for artists to compare notes. A complete list of Exhibition participants with full web pages and direct links to each company is available at sxsw.com/tradeshow/music/exhibitors. During the day, the Austin Convention Center is the place where the real work gets done.
But the centerpiece of this week of events is the music. The SXSW Music Festival, which spans five nights, will present musical genres ranging from hip-hop to alt country on 58 stages in venues ranging from the most intimate clubs to the always popular, free outdoor stage located at Auditorium Shores. The music starts on Wednesday, March 17 and runs through Sunday, March 21. A very small sampling of bands includes Alkaline Trio (Chicago IL), American Music Club (San Francisco IL), Atmosphere (Minneapolis MN), The B-52’s (Athens GA), The Church (Sydney, Australia), Matthew Dear (Detroit MI), The Decemberists (Portland WA), Destroyer (Vancouver, Canada), Dizzee Rascal (London UK), The Fiery Furnaces (New York NY), The Flatlanders (Lubbock TX), Jean Grae (New York NY), Patty Griffin (Austin TX), Robyn Hitchcock (London UK), The Hives (Fagersta, Sweden), The Holmes Brothers (New York NY), Little Richard (Macon GA), The Living Legends (Los Angeles CA), Los Lonely Boys (San Angelo TX), The Mavericks (Nashville TN), Mekons (London UK), Mission Of Burma (Boston MA), Modest Mouse (Issaquah WA), N.E.R.D. (Virginia Beach VA), NOFX (Los Angeles CA), Ozomatli (Los Angeles CA), Michelle Shocked (Los Angeles CA), Six Organs of Admittance (Santa Cruz CA), The Sleepy Jackson (Perth , Australia), The Thrills (Dublin, Ireland), and The Walkmen (New York NY). The outdoor shows, sponsored by HEB Grocery Stores, KEYE-TV, Toyota and Sirius Satellite Radio, take place for three evenings, Thursday, March 18 through Saturday, March 20 at 6:00 pm at Auditorium Shores on Riverside Drive in downtown Austin. Thursday’s show features the NARAS showcase with regional Mexican performers, Friday’s line-up features Toots and the Maytals, and Saturday’s line-up features Los Lonely Boys, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Grupo Fantasma, and Guy Forsyth. For a complete list of bands performing at the music festival, access our website at www.sxsw.com.
Helping to kick off the SXSW Music Festival is the Twenty-second Annual Austin Music Awards at the Austin Music Hall on Wednesday, March 17 at 7:55 p.m. sharp. This year’s show features performances by Los Lonely Boys; a tribute to Austin’s original punk club Raul’s called Class of 78 with Larry Seaman and Randy Franklin (Standing Waves), Stephen Marsh (Terminal Mind), Jesse Sublett (Skunks), Terri Lord (The Jitters), and more; and a St. Paddy’s Day Throwdown between bluegrass trio the Greencards and Irish traditionalists Cluan. Registration badges and wristbands for SXSW include admission to the Austin Music Awards. The Awards are presented by The Austin Chronicle and sponsored by 107.1 KGSR and 101X and benefit the SIMS Foundation.
A featured attraction this year also in the Austin Convention Center is Flatstock 4 presented by SXSW and the American Poster Institute (API) on Friday, March 19 – Saturday, March 20. The poster show will feature over 65 poster artists from around the world with several thousand posters, handbills, flyers, and gig posters for exhibition and purchase. In addition, poster-making workshops will be taught each morning from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Attending artists include Arminski, EMEK, Factor 27, the Firehouse, Hatch Show Print, Hess, Jagmo, Jermaine, Kozik, Mike King, Kleinsmith, Kuhn, Narum, Jay Ryan, Scrojo, Jeff Wood and more.
A year long benefit to being a SXSW Registrant is the SXSW.COM Online Registrants directory, a searchable listing of music industry professionals attending SXSW. Also available online to registrants are mp3s and streaming audio of hundreds of acts performing in the music festival. Before stepping on the plane, participants will have an excellent idea of what is in store and a valuable resource afterwards of who they met and what they heard.
SXSW Music walk-up registration fee is $525. A Platinum pass which includes access to all three SXSW conferences – Music, Film and Interactive is $775. Pre-registration prices started at $325 and $475, respectively, for those who were willing to sign up early.
South by Southwest Music and Media Conference, in its eighteenth year, is sponsored by Miller Lite, Digital Rights Agency, The Austin Chronicle and KLBJ-FM.
SXSW Music Conference is co-sponsored by a network of 41 regional arts and entertainment magazines from across the United States and Canada. SXSW 2004 welcomes Baltimore Citypaper (Baltimore, MD), Black & White (Birmingham, AL), Boston Phoenix (Boston, MA), Cincinnati CityBeat (Cincinnati, OH), City Pages (Minneapolis, MN), Cleveland Scene (Cleveland, OH), Creative Loafing (Charlotte, NC), Dallas Observer (Dallas, TX), East Bay Express (Emeryville, CA), Flagpole (Athens, GA), Fort Worth Weekly (Ft. Worth, TX), Good Times Magazine (Long Island, NY), Houston Press (Houston, TX), Independent Weekly (Durham, NC), LA Weekly (Los Angeles, CA), Little Village (Iowa City, IA), Memphis Flyer (Memphis, TN), Metro Times (Detroit, MI), Miami New Times (Miami, FL), Nashville Scene (Nashville, TN), New Times – Broward-Palm Beach (Ft. Lauderdale, FL), Nightflying (Little Rock, AR), NOW Magazine (Toronto, Canada), OC Weekly (Costa Mesa, CA), Offbeat (New Orleans, LA), Omaha Weekly Reader (Omaha, NB), Orlando Weekly (Orlando, FL), Pasadena Weekly (Pasadena, CA), Phoenix New Times (Phoenix, AZ), The Pitch (Kansas City, KS) Riverfront Times (St. Louis, MO), Salt Lake City Weekly (Salt Lake City, UT), San Antonio Current (San Antonio, TX), San Diego CityBEAT (San Diego, CA), Seattle Weekly (Seattle, WA), SF Weekly (San Francisco, CA), Shepherd Express (Milwaukee, WI), Tucson Weekly (Tucson, AZ), Ventura County Reporter (Ventura, CA), Weekly Alibi (Albuquerque, NM), and Westword (Denver, CO). SXSW co-sponsors provide support for promotional activities and musical events in connection with the conference.
The fourteenth annual SXSW Invitational Golf Tournament will take place at Jimmy Clay Golf Course on Wednesday, March 17 at 12:00 p.m. (Shotgun Start). The format will be Four-Person Texas Scramble. This year it benefits the Austin Music Network and Lone Star Musicians Foundation. For more information, call 512/974-1800 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The golf tournament is sponsored by SXSW, ASCAP and Ropers Nightclub.
The eighteenth annual SXSW Softball Tournament gets underway Sunday, March 21, at Monroe Lefty Krieg Fields. Player warm-up begins at noon, with the first game starting at 1:00 pm sharp. For those of you whose idea of sports begins and ends with a brisk sprint to the refrigerator, there’s the SXSW Barbecue, an authentic Texas spread with the trimmings, prepared by Ruby’s Barbecue (with all natural, free-range beef), but vegetarians need not despair, Ruby’s does great vegetarian options, also. This event is for SXSW registrants only.
For more information, check out www.sxsw.com