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SXSW: Jody's Saturday

By JodyG

Tuesday March 18, 2008

Saturday, March 15th

It’s Saturday morning. I only know this because my phone says so. The days are bleeding into one another. I’m tired. I have so many stamps and wristbands on my hands that I’ve lost track of where they’ve all come from. I’ve figured out how to bus it into town off of the interstate for only fifty cents. Austin has been accomplished. And there is still one day to go.

I make it downtown in time to catch the first bit of The Acorn’s set. After a few songs, I head down the street to where The Tokyo Police Club and the rest of the Tripod is hanging out. The band was slotted to play an afternoon show but due to the passing of a family member, only Dave takes the stage for a solo set. We run into the guys from 1/2 Alive and have breakfast out of an icecream vending cart. They take off to the Fader party, where they are apparentely giving away tons of free shit. The Tripod stops to watch Nicole Atkins, we had spotted her in the crowd at Black Mountain’s ‘private’ showcase the day before. She mentions the band during her set, but then loses some major points for playing a cover song. Afternoon showcases only get about 20-25 minutes to play. At any given moment at SXSW there are at least three other places you should be. If I’m stopping to check out your stuff, the last thing I want to hear is a cover.

The Stills and Holy Fuck are playing over at The Beauty Bar. I pass by Dallas Green standing outside. I’ve seen him around at most of the free, Canadian bbqs. We make eye contact for the umpteemth time; the mutual appreciation for rad specs and tattoos.

Holy Fuck. Pretty sick. One of the guys was wearing an A Place To Bury Strangers t-shirt. Brodom, how punk rock. I stood next to Rachel Ray, who rumour had it, had done shots with Motorhead the night before. Since we had been partying at Beauty Bar all week, we were in a prime spot ‘backstage,’ aka behind a line drawn on the ground. I caught up tto heir drummer Matt right after they played and within a few minutes of chatting, broke the news that Lou Reed was a fan. I figure it would have filtered down by then, but the band had no idea. Can we say ‘scoop?’

Scrambling to squeeze in as much as possible on the last night, we try to make it to M Ward after grabbing some dinner. The venue only has a capacity of 100 people. They aren’t letting anymore people in till after 11 PM. Scratch that. Arts and Crafts is having a showcase a block away. The Constantines are a major highlight of the night. During Jason Collette’s set, The Stills’ keyboard player, Liam, leans over my shoulder and says ‘That’s my part, I played that on the record.’ I told him that if this was hip hop he’d be up there, because it was his part. Some of the members of The Choir Practice are in the audience. Chris Kelly fills me in on a Curtis Santiago/Choir Practice collaboration filmed out at an old church in the country that morning by Todd M Duym. They did it in one take, as something like that should only be done.

We decide to check out the scene on the streets, so different from a few nights earlier. More Granville hooch then I would have liked to have seen, someone else compared it to Mardi Gras. We pass by a group of babes who don’t seem to know what to do with themselves. I tell them that they are babes, and conversation insues. Ryder, from The Mohawk Lodge passes by, and laughing, announces that it looks like a stand-off between The Tripod and The Random Babes. I start to arm wrestle the one closest to me and tell him to be careful because I’m wirey. We find out afterwards that he plays in Minus The Bear. Cool, you still arm wrestle like a girl.

One of the guys asks ‘Where’s the party?’ I laugh. We are standing in it. We are the party.

Over the week there were a hundred other acts I couldn’t make it to and I know there are things I’ve left out, things I can’t remember due to my fondess for margaritas on the rocks. I won’t even begin to tell you about the madness of the airport over the next few days. Those of you who were wanting a little more dirt regarding ‘SXS-seX’, there are things you learn from hangin’ in the south; There’s no excuse for a man not to be a gentleman and a lady doesn’t kiss and tell…