Every March, dozens of D.C. artists join thousands of musicians from around the world at Austin, Texas’ massive South by Southwest Festival—a place where hopes are live-tweeted and dreams are expensively publicized. Is this the year the D.C. delegation makes its mark? There will be plenty of individual artists and bands making the Austin trek, but here are some of the larger D.C. happenings—-official and unofficial—-at South by Southwest, including label showcases, a venue on wheels, and a brand new Bluebrain commission.
DC Does TX, Lovejoy’s, March 14
Since 2008, this annual unofficial showcase has presented a day-long, well-curated lineup highlighting the District’s more polished indie rockers. This year, things are a bit scuzzier: The organizers—bloggers Valerie Paschall, Dan Corbin, and Steve Rogovin—teamed up with independent booker Sasha Lord, who specializes in hip-as-fuck garage rock.
The Lineup: Hume, Deleted Scenes, Soccer Team, Edie Sedgwick, and Kid Congo Powers and the Pink Monkey Birds, with more TBA. DJ Baby Alcatraz will DJ.
Texas Chili Pepper Scoville Index: 500,000
Sweet Tea Pumpkin Pie, Casa Chapala, March 14-17
Hyper-enthusiastic musician and blogger Dave Mann started a hyper-inclusive local rock festival last year. Now he’s expanding to Austin and, characteristically, is going large. His unofficial Sweet Tea Pumpkin Pie showcase spans four days and two stages, with a quarter devoted to D.C. artists.
The Lineup: Some familiar local indie-rock names, like Deleted Scenes and Pree, and plenty of kinda-obscure ones. Headlining the noisy fourth night is Texas nu-gazers Ringo Deathstarr.
Slip Productions and Lovitt Records Showcase, Club 1808, March 15
The longtime Arlington label teams with an Austin promoter for a bill of aggressive and brainy bands.
The Lineup: Sleepytime Trio, Redgrave, Regents, Edie Sedwick, Soccer Team, Beast of No Nation and More
Listen Local First Mobile Music Venue
The local music boosters are taking on South by Southwest hobo style. I wrote about this yesterday.
The Violet Crown, South by Southwest Festival area
South by Southwest commissioned local experimental-pop duo Bluebrain to compose another free, location-aware musical app. The Violet Crown doesn’t cover as big a geographic area as Bluebrain’s earlier National Mall and Central Park apps, which is actually a plus: This app is small enough to download on a 3G network. The duo is also performing with Frank Warren, the artist behind the project “Post Secret,” on March 11 at the Austin Convention Center.
Fuck SXSW, Montserrat House, Washington, D.C., April 6-7
Travis “Beeronimo” Jackson runs local garage-punk label Windian Records, but instead of flying his roster out to Austin each year—where the booze is abundant but the career benefits are dubious—he schedules some anti-programming in D.C. For musical quantity, you can’t beat South by Southwest, but the always rowdy Windian might have it beat on volume.
The Lineup: ’70s punks The Penetrators, plus The Bizarros, Paint Fumes, Thee Lolitas, Foul Swoops, Spider Fever, The Shirks, and more.