SXSW – Music Takes the Cake

So you’ve heard about the parties, lines for the parties, free shit inside the parties, surprise performances and all that jazz. SXSW is a lot of things but first and foremost a community. A community of people unlike any other music festival, because for the most part, it’s free and open to everyone. Strut down dirty 6th and you’re in the thick of it – bass music dropping off the rooftops above you, melodies spilling out the door of every bar, and the eclectic sounds of traveling musicians from corner to corner. Whether handing out mixtapes on the street or performing at the Fader Fort, artists expose, certify, and ascertain themselves as whoever it is they are. What they all do the same though: evoke a certain reaction with their craft – calling out the lover, freak, animal in all of us and demanding it’s full attention.

I was making my way to the exit of Austin City Music Hall one night when I noticed a girl who was standing alone, unusually close to the wall. Further investigation proved she was charging her phone. You know when you’re phone dies but you need to charge it so you can find your friends and don’t end up sleeping in your car? Right. So she was charging her phone by herself – but she was also dancing. And I don’t mean she was sitting on the ground, nodding her head. She was dancing like I will right after a shower when the song is right (which it usually is). When the strawberry pop-tart and espresso are doing their thing. When the only audience is a very fresh, very clean me. However it is you feel when you hear a certain song, wherever it is you go – it was happening, she was there. The way music moves us, gives us confidence, helps us through, to, and from damn near everything is magic. I saw freedom in her every step – no, I felt it. It was contagious, and I walked away happier than I was when I found that cupcake spot on the east side (WOW). It’s that feeling which makes the puddle of beer you’re standing in irrelevant, waiting in lines longer than 3 Chik-fil-A’s at lunch worth while, and dancing next to that couple – who if not on a honeymoon are sure as hell on something else – tolerable.

Maybe you wait hours to see Drake and Instagram the shit out of him, or maybe you stumble into a random bar and a complete stranger changes your day. SXSW provides a platform for artists to share their sound with the world whether you’re known or not, by millions or a few.  Artists, fans, and bits and pieces of weird old Austin, Texas come together to make SXSW something worth being apart of – an experience our’s to make.