What is to be said about our favorite interactive, movie, and music festival that has not been said already. It was FUCKING INSANE this year.
I believe 2011 was the year that Interactive and Movie portion had a larger attendance and presence then the later in the week Music festival; however, it seems 2012 was the year that meshed all aspects of the festival into a flavorful week long party gumbo. The industries emerge and work together more and more seamlessly every day through and because of changes in technology, consumer behavior, and marketing.
It is only fitting that the Music portion of the festival seemingly started earlier this year clearly evidenced by perhaps the biggest hyped concert of the festival, the American Express Jay-Z show, which was actually part of the Interactive festival. Way to go hype beasts, you guys eagerly joined into the concert by tweeting an AMEX hashtag…kudos to the marketing geniuses behind that one. AMEX sonned most of the corporate parties during interactive with this lil charade. This was just the first over the top promotions that went on throughout the strenuously awesome week…seriously,we are seasoned SXSW’ers, and by Wednesday it seemed like Saturday. Notable over the top promotions included a huge 3 tiered Doritos stage that shadowed parts of downtown with its super vending machine presence, as well as lasers and fog machines placed over 6th street so that you felt like you couldn’t even escape the clubs by going on to the streets for a breather. Nike also commandeered a good downtown block to build an LED lit wall that made parts of Austin feel very Las Vegas at night as the glow of Nike Ads gave everyone around a glowing aura. This was done in part to promote some new shit they made, some fitness bracelet of some sort. We also liked that they built a skate ramp, basketball court and other activities for SXSW’ers to take part in, you know just in case the walking and drinking all day was not fitness enough for them.
Austin’s hometown buzz act Gary Clark Jr pretty much rocked SXSW and was the act to catch during the week. Gary and his band played something like 2-3 showcases a day throughout the week including high profile shows like headlining the Warner Brothers showcase, Rolling Stones showcase, MTV Woody awards, MOG showcase and more.
As big as rock was with Rick “the Boss” Springstein’s show being the big hullaballoo of all the older “industry types; this year was undoubtedly the year of hip hop. Seemingly every player in the hip hop industry from indie to mainstream was in Austin for a showcase or just to take in the circus. The big names like Lil Wayne, T.I., Busta Rhymes, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, 50 Cent and Rick Ross got a lot of mainstream fans into downtown to wait in the craziest lines for a chance to see their favorite hitmakers.
Meanwhile the more seasoned listeners, diggers, and trendsetters perched into some still crazy, yet way more tangible lines for a chance to catch those acts that are buzzing and underneath the radar of most. SXSW, afterall, originates as a festival for the little guys, the emerging bands, the music that needs discovering, and I wholly think that it still is. I always have the best time seeing buzz acts that are hungry and still believe in the musicality , and the performance, those that do not forget their own lyrics (50 Cent) or use recorded backing vocals (Eminem) for their performance…but maybe thats just me.
Parker with his sweet 5 on it tee and Jaysin catching the Electric Touch show. Parker’s closet also holds a Shock G “Humpty Hump” tour jacket that he may have worn if it was a bit cooler out.
We kicked it with the homie JaysinLivedHere who has recently released his EP, “Here’s to the Firing Squad”. The EP also features videos for every song on the project being released to the public on every Friday. TGIF. twitter:jaysinlivedhere
Here’s Table Manners Crew‘, Kid Slyce making sure that the beats are up and the dance floor is in full swing. Slyce DJ’s for most of Phranchyze’s sets as well.
Here’s Legit Rhythm’s doing their thing. This is proof you don’t need a huge budget to push your music and brand at SXSW; just a good friend some cardboard , markers, and tape. This walking photo opportunity was mad busy as we met with them along the busy 5th street traffic.
Austin’s League of Extraordinary G’z were definitely all over the place throughout the week. The celebrated Austin crew were catching love everywhere they went.
Here is some more proof that big budget marketing does not always win, sometimes it just take some ingenuity and a dolly. This mobile projection rig was complete with a full PA so that anywhere these guys stopped to project was also accompanied with great sound.
Phranchyze doing what he does. This was from the first of his many showcases during the week. Phranchyze just released his latest album “S.T.A.R.S” and was using the popular music festival as an outlet to promote the new project. twitter:phranchyze
Cool wheat-pasted street art was all over the downtown area during SXSW, this is one of our favorite images on the trendy new east side.
Here’s an impromptu cypher taking place on 6th street.
SX street art.
Theorem, and thats Geezey back their photobombing. repect.
The homie Maldonado taking a breather from the busy Austin streets.
Mr Muthafuckin Exquire was perhaps one of the biggest hip hop buzz acts this year at SXSW, we saw a few of his performances, one was neutered by APD and noise ordinances, the one later in the week was just a short excuse for a performance; however, he did manage to salvage his name as he accompanied EL-P on a heater of a set at the Thrasher showcase.
Karthik and Moshe of Hour Band lounging at the Hotwire Unlimited office. Hour Band just released their latest album “Only” and are fresh from a show in NY with Phranchyze and a sold out San Antonio show with Gary Clark Jr. Make sure to check out their website as well, as they took the time to offer their fans a real cool interactive experience. Twitter:@hourband
This was an example of one of the rap cyphers taking place on 6th street.
Anyone that wanted to could don a brush and paint a little something on these walls.
Bobba Fett patrolling the busy SXSW streets.
Calm Child is a crew that’s really putting it down for Austin. The crew hosts a weekly hip hop night that is growing into a great haven for underground MC’s and acts.
Here’s DJ Baby Chino who is marketed as the World’s youngest DJ. He was mixing at a local clothing store.
Heres a photo from one of the first Electric Touch shows we went to in the week. Electric Touch just dropped a new album on Island called “Never Look Back” which features some of the catchiest songs you will hear this year. Twitter:@electrictouch
Grieves and Budo also proved positive that you do not need a corporate backing in order to get a full crowd on their feet and putting their hands in the air. This exceptional duo entertained a full club with true musicianship and crowd control. Twitter:@grievesmusic and @budo
Being that it was early in the week, i forgot this MC’s name, but he did put on a dynamic set…anyays, wish i had more iinfo for you on him, but whatever. PART 2 of SXSW posting coming soon.