DJ Mappquest’s SXSW 2014 Preview

South by Southwest 2014 LogoSXSW. Some people love it, while the rest never heard of it.

What is it?
South by Southwest, known in abbreviated text form as SXSW, is the Mecca of movie and music – a festival of almost all festivals. Very few festivals reach the pinnacle that SXSW reaches. Being that I work for a radio station, and an all-around music lover, I am by far more interested in the music side of the festival than the film. The official music portion of SXSW lasts almost a week!

Historically, SXSW has been known for its huge base in alternative and indie music. As time progressed, rock, hip hop, and electronica have invaded the scene. In recent history, it has become exceptionally feasible for a fan of hip hop music to solely enjoy just hip hop shows. Still, SXSW remains the bastion, one of the few places any one can see as many of the top alternative and indie bands and artists in one week as SXSW can provide.

Where is it?
Since I’e known it, it has been hosted in the “music capital of the world” – Austin, Texas. Hosted in the Convention Center, and the numerous venues around it, SXSW creates a city within a city with the thousands upon thousands who attend. It can be an overwhelming experience for those use to concerts that are merely for a few hundred. They say everything is bigger in Texas, the festival and concerts are no exception.

What to expect?
Last year was my first year. Last year I had the pleasure of enjoying many acts, including rising stars like Wallpaper., Capital Cities, and JMSN, as well as well known bands and artists such as Baauer (the creator of the song, “Harlem Shake”) and Fall Out Boy.

This year includes acts of all sorts. In the electronica realm, fans can expect to see heavy hitters such as Flosstradamus, Reid Speed, and Borgore. An artist I am not sure is as well known, but I may be wrong, is Kaytranada – a personal favorite of mine. SXSW is on point with the electronica shows. The showcase last year that featured Baauer, 12th Planet, Candyland and more was on point!

Hip Hop will have a treat with some of the “heavy hittas” such as Chance the Rapper, Kendrick Lamar, and Schoolboy Q. Local Northern California artist Sage the Gemini and IAmSu will be there as well. Last year I had the pleasure of enjoying Louis Logic, who will be at SXSW again this year, and Open Mike Eagle – two great performers and artists.

Lastly, but not least, is the many alternative and indie bands. Returning for the iTunes stage is Capital Cities, who hit huge success and fame shortly after SXSW last year. Other notables include The Colourist, Tokyo Police Club, and We Were Promised Jet Packs.

There are plenty more acts, but there are too many to list. In short, SXSW is one of the biggest, best parties of the year with great familiar and new performances to see! You may have missed out on coming to SXSW 2014, but there’s always 2015. Expect a wrap up of my experience at the end of the week.



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