We are some where in west texas, it has only taken us all fucking day to get here, but hey at least we are going west at this point. When I woke up this morning we were parked at a truck stop in Waco, being an hour and a half NORTH of Austin. Can you believe that? Last I checked California was west, hahaha.. I kid, its all in good fun.
Austin was spectacular! Nothing bad (that is worth mentioning) happened and a great time was had. South by South West was defs not how I expected it to be, instead a totally different world in its own.
When I look back to a few weeks ago when I was sitting on a public bus going to work, day dreaming of what Austin//SXSW would be like I remember thinking it would be the same as Canadian Music Week in Toronto or New Music West in Vancouver, and it some regards it was but the way it was run and the scale it was on was far from what I have seen before. I was dissapointed to find out, in order to attend any seminars or panels that you had to posess a ” sxsw badge” and said badge costs (from what I heard) $900…. Soooooo there went that great idea out the window. The other way into some events was to have a wristband (this is how it works in canada for the most part) but the only people that can get wristbands are Austin residents, again there goes that idea… One day I hope I am in a position where I can afford to buy a badge as the amount of shows etc and the calibre of your overall experience are phenomenal.
With all that said, there was an unlimited amount of ways to keep entertained and still being able to see amazing bands from all over the globe and represented on all levels. The pass we were given aloud us into different VIP parties at different venues as well as various industry only shows, however we didn’t do to much in that regard as there simply wasn’t enough time between checking out bands, running into friends, playing shows and let’s not forget that long pain in the ass walk from 17th and Trinity(the only place we could park the RV and Trailor) to 7th and Neches (general meeting place amongst our circle).
Two highlights on a personal level were “sneaking in” to the Stone Temple Pilots show at the Austin City Music Hall and seeing Sage Francis do an impromptu throw down and battle on the side of 6th street in the middle of the day.
Seeing STP was unreal! They are one band that I have wanted to see live for as long as I can remember and for whatever reasons I have never seen before, and it is almost like it was just meant to be this way. When doing research before my trip, I learned that STP would be playing a show in Austin during my trip there and after going over our itinerary upon arrival I found out we had a show the same time STP were set to play, so no dice. However, the morning of the show we had to cancel that evenings performance due to illness but I had already written off the idea of seeing the stone temple pilots so the thought of them even being in town had already left my mind. So after a day of drinking and taking in the sights and sounds of Austin we were nearly ready to pack it in for the night when we get a text message (thank whatever higher being is out there for technology in such times) saying that STP was playing at 10:30pm,well at this point the show was 15 minutes in, but with out hesitation we investigate the where abouts of the ACMH, and to our suprise we are a quick 7 blocks away…and onward we go.. As we approach the venue we start seeing posters saying have wrist bands and (the formentioned) “sxsw badges” ready to be presented at the door. Knowing we didn’t meet these requirements we persisted on through and were stopped by the lady at the door who looked at our pass but being full of adreneline we didn’t give her much room to talk or fully look at which pass we had, so we get into the venue only to be stopped by some douche bag who, for whatever reason, feels he has the need to stop us after the lady ( who realisticaly had no choice as we were seeing that show regardless) all ready let us in. This guy may however had more athority than the first lady but again we had our minds set on seeing this show, so he stopped me while the others ran passed and into the crowd and as I saw Ashley’s back dissapear I took that as my cue to carry on, so I tore away from this dude and followed the other 3 into the crowd. Now, this is where it gets good! As we entered into the main hall where the stone temple pilots had just began playing 2000’s smash hit “Sour Girl” I look around and realize there is no more than 2500 people in this room, and there was no way they could get a single fly between these walls….
And there we were… standing 50 feet from Weiland, the DeLeo’s and Kretz… It really couldn’t be a better way to spend this evening and nothing could ruin this.. Except good mexican food and corona’s for dinner… ’nuff said..
So after a firey debate in the mens room, back to the sole reason why I was in this building.. STP.. I am welcomed back into the “party” by Creep, followed by Plush only to be topped with every song you could want to hear if you were asked to pick a dream set to see in such a small venue. It was amazing! Straight up. The small crowd, the delicatley hand picked set list, Weilands stunning vocal performance and even a glimpse at the upcoming album, yet to be titled. It seriously couldn’t get any better, AND IT DOES…
Just as the crowd gets antsy,waiting to see what they could pull off next, they pull an unthinkable move.. Weiland walks out to the center of the stage and announces to the crowd that they have a suprize, they have brought one of the greatest guitar players of all time to do a song… Now who on gods green earth could this be, every year rolling stone and guitar world release lists with their ideas, but who would STP choose? Robby Kreiger of the Doors.. Robby fuckin’ Kreiger, are you kidding me? Nope, they sure weren’t… So there stands the 4 members of STP and RK… Now, of all the Doors songs they could play what would they play.. Well something the crowd will know and sing a long to is obvious.. Some maybe light my fire I think to myself.. And I was wrong, they go right on into “Let it Roll”… Seriously couldn’t ask for anything better..
And that was that.. After this, nothing else seems relivant…
Until we found our selves munchin cup cakes, watching New York rapper Sage Francis battle it out front of an urban ware clothing store on 6th street.. He even took the time to say whaddup and snap a couple photos with some west coast white boy rockers ( although being white hardly has a roll in this equation seeing as he is a white boy, and even once signed to Epitaph records)…
And that was SXSW… The rest can be best described in the photo’s I took that I will upload here as soon as I get onto a computer…
Its now 1 am tuesday morning I suppose.. I have no clue where we are any more, I am seeing signs directing us toward El Paso which means we go through those trusty government check points, which means I should probably clean up the bong water I just so gracefully spilled. Fml!
For once I will be happy to see a welcome to New Mexico sign.. Weeeeird!