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Posts Tagged ‘sxsw’

SXSW Baby Interview: Cassie Hay, ‘The Liberators’

Friday, March 11th, 2016

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Ewan talks to Cassie Hay, director of the documentary film ‘The Liberators’.

Medieval art treasures seized by the Nazis go missing at the end of World War II. Were they destroyed in the chaos of the final battles? Or were these thousand-year-old masterpieces stolen by advancing American troops? For over forty years, the mystery remained unsolved. A true detective story, The Liberators follows a dogged German art detective through the New York art world and military archives to the unlikeliest of destinations: a small town on the Texas prairie. The film raises intriguing questions as to the motivations of the art thief and the whereabouts of the items that, to this day, remain waiting to be discovered.

More on The Liberators at SXSW.com.

The SXSW 2016 Music Sampler From SXSW Baby

Wednesday, March 9th, 2016

As the time comes to commit to the music, you need to be able answer the question of who you might want to see at SXSW. It’s a lot easier with the internet and lots of samples, but there are still far too many bands for the overage attendee to plough through. Aafter the reaction to our MP3 Samplers from previous years we all knew going in that we’d be putting together another eighty acts you really must listen to at this year’s South by Southwest music.

DOWNLOAD the SXSW Baby! “Best of SXSW 2016″ sampler
Mega.co.nz link (423 Mb)

A little bit about the process. Through the friends of the parish over on ‘Operation Every Band‘ we built our initial “long list” of acts to listen to. Into that mix the SXSW Baby! team threw in the music we’ve been discovering along the way. We also asked a number of our friends in the music industry to suggest a few names as well.

From then it was a matter of listening to them all again, debating favourites, comparing a few songs that were incredibly similar in head-to-head decisions, and once we had a provisional list, any new song that demanded to be included had to bump an existing song out of the playlist.

After all that, we’re left with 80 tracks (all of which are freely available to listen to online folks, we’ve just got them in one place), and a big jigsaw to get a great running order. As previous years, I wanted to create some great moments when listening to the songs, to have the music flow into each other, to have sequences that would allow you to both dip in and out of the sampler, or stick it on a five hour playlist (which should just about reach from the TSA screening at your local airport to the reception desk of your hotel – or twice through if you’re flying from Europe).

If the eighty tracks feels too much for you, then you can break it down to eight ten-track playlists.

  • Welcome to Austin (Tracks 1-10)
  • Ten More Songs That You’ll Love Like The First Ten (Tracks 11-20)
  • Chilling On The Town Lake (Tracks 21-30)
  • Only In America (Tracks 31-40)
  • Distorition Days (Tracks 41-50)
  • The Global Village Of SXSW Music (Tracks 51-60)
  • Texas Is Electric (Tracks 61-70)
  • It All Ends, Like Tears In The Rain (Tracks 71-80)

If you’re not sure, here’s the deal. Listen to the first ten tracks. I’m confident that not only will this give you a great hit of SXSW Music, but you’ll want to listen to the rest of the sampler.

The biggest problem in the 21st century is not piracy but obscurity”, Cory Doctorow.

– @Ewan and the @SXSWbaby team


Getting the most out of SXSW in March (all year round)

Tuesday, March 1st, 2016

Dan Chuparkof makes the bold claim of writing ‘The Definitive Guide To Hacking SXSW’, and while I can see a few things I would add (which downgrades definitive to comprehensive) there’s still a lot going on in this post. It’s actually geared up to looking at SXSW as a year-long adventure (that sounds familiar) but his advice for March is perfect.

For example, take his backpack advice for prowling around Austin:

  • A refillable water bottle & snacks: 11:00 & 12:30 sessions are some of the best of SouthBy. You might not be able to squeeze lunch in without missing something awesome. Bring some food. There’s a pretty good chance, you’ll also be dehydrated from the night before, so bring some H2O.
  • An external phone battery: You will run out of juice. You’ll be downloading apps all day, tweeting, taking video, and struggling to get a wifi/cell signal all day. Nothing kills nighttime fun worse than a dead phone. If you forgot this part, head to the SXSW expo on Saturday, Mophie will have a booth and they’ll sell JuicePacks.
  • An umbrella & poncho: Don’t bother checking the weather. I promise it rains every March in Austin.
  • Other essentials: Aspirin, Vitamin-C, business cards, extra room for free t-shirts & swag.

All that and more can be found here.

Comedy line-up announced

Saturday, February 27th, 2016

SXSW Comedy is one of the growing parts of SXSW and the Austin team has announced the names for this year’s event. you can find them online, but I’ll also highlight Bill Tressler’s look at the line-up on The Interrobang.

These are only a handful of the huge list of comedians who will be making an appearance at this years festival, so anyone in the audience is all but destined to have a good time. The set times and lineups of the two showcases have not yet been announced, so for now, those looking to go will simply have to secure their badges and then wait for more information. Events will be taking place from 3/11 to 3/20, and will be available to all those with SXSW badges. Those with wrist bands will only be able to access certain events.

Looking over the list there’s a heavier reliance on ‘recording internet shows’ and talent at the start of their careers, but coming from the UK the different nature of the comedy circuits in the US and the focus on ‘getting on TV’ as opposed to building a steady ‘touring’ income skews the available talent.

Still, SXSW is building up this section of the Festival, and international interest is (slowly) growing.

No, SXSW has not ‘Jumped the Shark’

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2016

The headline is a common refrain, and you’d better be ready for it in March, but Vikki Chowney  lays out the reasons why SXSW is nowhere near Fonzie on waterskis at The Holmes Report. Simply put, many established conferences (especially on the PR and marketing side) are about what’s happening now. Southby is about what’s happening next!

Cannes still attracts the most senior people from agency and client side, in their thousands. If you can’t get time with the right person; chances are you will at Cannes. Need to get a decision maker to commit? You’ll make headway there. It’s also the best place to find real case studies with great results that are working now.

SXSW is the place to go and learn about future trends. I saw technologies there that may have already been on the radar of the early adopters – but were for the first time truly brought to life and made viable to use in your next piece of work. I’ve subsequently watched these become more important to brands and marketers throughout the year. From robotics and artificial intelligence, to DNA testing and self-diagnosis through technology, the ever-expanding potential of social listening and a significant focus on purpose-driven brands, these were the focus areas of last year’s conference.

That said, can we have The Fonz skiing across Town Lake this year?

Permits, events, and old-fashioned detective work

Monday, February 22nd, 2016

You might recall Austin City Council has cut back on the permits for events at SXSW this year (SXSW Baby, Feb ), so the release of all of the issued permits makes for interesting reading. It also gives an idea of some of the events that are going to be happening downtown during the ten days.

Deborah Stith has went through the names and dates with a fine toothed comb, like a modern-day musical Columbo:

  • Pandora has an event set for 710-718 Red River St, 710 is Hoboken Pizza and 718 is Valhalla, could this be a block party on the street?
  • SXSW Film will host outdoor screenings on the Long Center Terrace. Also, there’s going to be a “Power Puff Girls” premiere parade at the Long Center.
  • This year’s Spotify House will be at Nuevo Leon on East Sixth Street.
  • A series of Samsung events and a Capital Live Entertainment event were denied because they came in after the cutoff, although they were submitted on Feb. 5, the original deadline the city advertised. There is, however, a Samsung event taking place at the old Downtown post office on Guadalupe.

Pick out your highlights at Austin 360.

All the film details you could need (if all you need are the start-times)

Tuesday, February 16th, 2016

Just over three weeks to go before the start of SXSW, and its time to start sorting out your diary as the times of all the events start to come through. First up is SXSW Film, and the keynotes, sessions, and screenings are all in the system for you to work through and build up your daily schedule (which you’ll probably ignore once you get to Austin, but hey, that’s just how Southby’ers roll).

Back in my day you had to use pencil and paper, or a chunky marker in the big book (to be honest I still do both, but I’m stubborn). Most people will be using their SXsocial login to select their favourites, and then syncing the results to their smartphones so they can look at them on the move.

I’m told it’s progress…