Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Hop, skip and jump around

Golden glitter cowboy boots had been wrapped around high wires in several places around town. How they got there is a mystery.

As yesterday, we started at the Paste party at the crack of noon. The first band was “von Grey,” which we knew absolutely nothing about… turns out they are a very listenable group of 4 young sisters who sing and play various acoustic instruments (very well), and for lack of a better description I would say they play contemporary pop/grass Americana with just a slight Nashville flavor. Wow - that was a genre salad. See what you think:

We left Paste (The Stages on Sixth) after von Grey and walked some blocks over to the Pandora Discovery Den, which is usually known as Antone’s nightclub (that is until it moves to the Eastside this week). They have great lineups as well, and it’s really pleasant and cool inside. Also, maybe a bit less crowded than some other places because you need to RSVP for a wristband (which is free) and they don’t have free refreshments. Anyway, it makes for a nice atmosphere. We saw Shakey Graves, an Austin-based singer/songwriter who I highly recommend - a little along the lines of John Fullbright and maybe some Ryan Bingham flavor in my opinion - lots of soul. We talked with his manager while we were waiting in line. He was a really nice guy from Canada, although his name escapes me.

Next up was the Milk Carton Kids from Los Angeles. They reminded me of Gillian Welch/Dave Rawlings (esp. Dave's guitar), Chad and Jeremy, early Simon and Garfunkel... and their stage banter was dry and funny like the Smothers Brothers. Sweet stuff.
Milk Carton Kids

We left Antone's and hiked over to the Whole Foods rooftop just in time to catch The Dunwells from Leeds UK. I really like those guys, they are good and lots of fun to watch too. Go and see them if you can. This picture looks pretty comical where the guitar player on the right in concerned.
The Dunwells

The East/West bus was uselessly slow, so we walked back to Antone's in time for Billy Bragg and Dawes (3rd time). I have wanted to see Billy Bragg for years. Checked another one off of the must-see list.
Billy Bragg

Yet another hike back west got us in to see Jesca Hoop, who has a beautiful and hypnotic vocal and guitar style. We sat cross-legged on the floor in a really terrible music venue for her, but during southby there is live music coming from every nook and cranny.


Debra She Who Seeks said...

Sounds like you saw some great performers! Did Billy Bragg sing The Internationale? Not too many people record that anymore, LOL!

Those glittery cowboy boots sure beat the usual beat-up runners that get tossed over high wires.

Blueberry said...

He didn't do that one, but did sing "The Great Leap Forward," "Sexuality," and "Greeting to the New Brunette" plus more. Also some wonnnderful put-downs of Rick Perry and the whole lot of right-wingers around the world.

lostmomjan said...

So much great music! I've only been to SXSW one time...1986... But still one of the most memorable trips of my life. Thank you for sharing.

Blueberry said...

lostmomjan: I wish I had been able to go way back then. It has changed radically just in the 2000s when we've been going. So HUGE!