The 2nd International Body Music Festival
Back in elementary school, we here at Festival Watch used to be way jealous of all the kids who could make farting sounds with their armpits. Seriously: This was a big deal to us (and we’d like to point out that, had we the Internets plugged in at Casa de Festival Watch in 19diggity8, our social life might have been just a touch better).

Come to find out, one can make more than just novelty sounds with one’s body (sort of). If you don’t believe us, you should check out the 2nd International Body Music Festival, which will happen Dec. 1—6 at various locations in the San Francisco Bay area. Artists include D.C.’s own Step Afrika!, “accomplished” flamenco performers Fátima Moreno González and Silvia Moreno Gil, and beat boxer Kenny Muhammad, who—-for good reason (please, please, please click here; the bit with the New York Philharmonic is kind of priceless)—-also goes by “the Human Orchestra.” For those of you who feel like breaking out the ol’ cupped-hand-in-the-armpit trick for audience testing, there’s also an open mic. Venues and prices vary; tickets were, as of this writing, still available.
What is Music? 2009
If you’ve got plans to be in Australia during the second week of December, you’re in luck: From Dec. 12-19 Sydney, Melbourne, and Perth will play host to the 2009 edition of the What is Music? festival. Quoth the organizers, “[a]fter a thunderous return in 2008, the What Is Music? Festival is back again attempting even more ridiculous and sublime experimental music programming!” Yee-haw! Notables here include John Wiese, who last visited the festival as a member of Sunn 0))), and something from Japan called hercel, which organizers have described as “man/woman, painful/ecstatic, creation/destruction, foreign/familiar and lots more tasty dichotomy action.” But the clear highlight is a closing night performance at Melbourne’s Iwaki Auditorium called 50/50, wherein 50 bands will play in 50 minutes. We’ll choose to take the literal route here, and assume that that means 50 different acts each get a minute to present themselves—-and we’ll further assume that you’re now totally sold. Venues vary; tickets can be had, apparently, by calling Australia.

SXSW 2010
Wanna know how close this year’s edition of the South by Southwest multi-purpose gathering is? You’ve already missed both the early registration and band submission deadlines. And showcases—-or at least showcase sponsors—-are already being announced. The latest belongs to England’s Bella Union, who’ve had a hand in records from Beach House, Abe Vigoda, Wavves, and Fleet Foxes. Whether or not any of these bands will find themselves included on an official Bella Union showcase wasn’t revealed, but we wouldn’t be shocked to see any of those folks appear somewhere in Austin this March.