Guest blogger and friend of Flamingo, Daniel de Lara, gives us an insider peek into the world of a SXSW performer.
It was that time of year when those indie acts privileged enough, came from all across the globe to the flatlands of Austin, Texas to earn their “Played SXSW” badge. The trek down to this musical mecca required that me and my band, Emil & Friends endure a 30+ hour drive down to the south. Emil & Friends (Cantora Records) is the brainchild of Emil Hewitt, a musical guru of sorts who is able to reference everything from 70s Yacht Rock to 90s Alt to slick synth pop productions of the early aughts. I met him in 2009 in Boston, all after I blogged about his mp3s on my music blog, asiandan.com and just last summer Emil Facebook messaged me inviting me to join the live rendition of his band playing bass.
Once we arrived in Austin and fueled ourselves with proper Texan BBQ, Korean BBQ Tacos and Lone Star Beer, it was time to play some loud music for people you hope will pay attention to at least one of your songs. SXSW is a place where music, film, and Internet start-ups that are already buzzing and doing well all come to celebrate and pat each other on the backs. But being allowed to mingle with these hypemachine products definitely felt like a nice invite to this cool kids club.
We played 3 showcases this year – all amazing experiences with positive reactions and feedback from newly acquired fans. In between playing these shows we were able to catch some great shows from our friends Fort Lean, as well Harriet, The-Dream, Blood Orange, Kindness, and Just Blaze. My favorite party I was able to catch was thrown by the UK’s own Boiler Room who rented a house 3 miles from downtown where I caught Hudson Mohawke and Jackmaster DJing in a living room which pretty much turned into a sauna.
Overall, SXSW was an enlightening learning experience about the machine that is the music industry and just one of the best excuses to party and play loud music for people. Hope to see you all down there next year!
For more behind-the-scenes images, check out Mashable’s 45 Insider Instagram Pics from bands, including Emil & Friends!
IMAGES COURTESY OF DANIEL DE LARA AND DRIVEN BY BOREDOM