SXSW - Austin Sessions
Well, it’s been a week of lunacy and SXSW has come and gone. I was off work in time to catch the tail end of it. Just like every…freaking…year. There’s nothing worse than watching my Twitter feed explode with incredible bands only to realize that I can’t go. I guess it’s my own fault for enduring a career that doesn’t allow for vacation during spring break. Has it always been during spring break? I wanna say no. I don’t remember.
Friday night, my wife and some friends went to Auditorium Shores to catch Divine Fits and Flaming Lips. I left work and got there as soon as I possible. I've been diggin the Spoon/Wolf Parade hybrid since the album was released and was really looking forward to watching them live. Naturally, I missed them. At least I got to watch my first Flaming Lips show. So I guess I had that going for me.
I got there at dusk, and with nearly non-existent cell coverage, it was almost impossible for me to find my peoples. Cryptic texts from my wife gave me hints as to their location. I gave up after about 30 minutes. After standing in an ATM line for another 30 minutes I grabbed a beer and set up camp. I people watched for a bit and decided to make use of my alone time. My Zoom H4n was yet untested in the field and although windscreen-less, I decided to try it out. Before I could finish plugging in my headphones, a band from California found me. "Headphones?! Are you serious?! What could you possibly be listening to?" My first audio bit of the night had found me. Score.
Saturday night was a completely different vibe. Different music. Different friends. We started out at Whip in for a quick beer and snack. We listened to Matt the Electrician while waiting for some friends. They were nice and unobtrusive. Perfect background music. After meeting up we headed over to the Grackle to visit one of our favorite food trailers East Side Kings. Of course it was fucking amazing as always. We watched a couple of hard core metal bands whose names I strangely "forgot" to absorb. From there we braved 6th street and headed west on foot. Along the way, we found a nice little surprise.
My cousin Carlos spent the weekend with us. He was here for SXSW, sure, but mostly to see Charles Bradley. If you don't know who he is, you need to. Get on Spotify right now. Imagine a James Brown style persona and put him at the convention center in downtown Austin. Carlos didn't buy a wristband, tickets, or a badge. So when I asked how he got in to the show, he just shrugged and said, "I just walked in like I was supposed to be there." He recently switched over to the iPhone 5 and was enthusiastic to show me the video he shot of himself sauntering into the venue. He also managed a Vampire Weekend show. He'd never heard of them but said he liked them a lot. Wtf.
Aaaand... podcast news. I’ve scheduled a few interviews and 90% of my equipment is here and tested. My Rode Procaster mics finally arrived. (Thank you Amazon Prime) They are heavy duty. Looking forward to playing with them. Steady as she goes. -J