With the annual South by Southwest Festival less than 4 weeks away, let’s have a look at some of the Scottish acts that have been confirmed for Austin’s biggest festival, (updated March 6th).
I wrote in some detail last year about my personal love affair with SXSW. Put simply, I’m a massive Scottish music fan living in Austin and so to be able to see some of the best new bands in Scotland on my doorstep every year is a massive thrill.
And sometimes the bands are actually on my doorstep. For the last five years, my wife and I have hosted a wee BBQ for the visiting Scots at our house in Travis Heights on the last Sunday of the festival. See ‘Scots on Doorstep’ photo above.
Anyway, for years now South by Southwest (SXSW) has been getting bigger and bigger. More bands, more parties, more visitors, and more fans. And for some people in Austin this meant more noise, more trouble, more of a pain in the arse.
Then last year four people were killed, and more than 20 others injured, when a drunk driver took a wrong turn down a closed-off street full of music fans. It was a horrific and shocking thing to happen and it has probably contributed to a scaling back of SXSW. Or at least a check on the expansion.
This year the City of Austin is limiting the number of temporary permits and reducing the amount of multi-day event permits by 20-25%. I hear that a lot of bigger sponsors are staying away this year too because of the expected difficulty in securing last minute permits.
But maybe this will be a positive thing for the Scottish acts. They might not have to compete with the likes of Lady Gaga, Jay-Z and Coldplay (who all played in 2014) for a start. We shall see.
Ok so here is our list of Scottish acts compiled from scouring the internet and tapping up a few insiders. With four weeks still to go, this list will likely change, but we will revisit it again in time for the festival.
Creative Scotland announced that it was supporting seven Scottish bands (marked with an asterisk below). In addition, we found
three four more that are currently scheduled to make an appearance. Here is the list:
- Dave Arcari *
- Fatherson *
- Hector Bizerk *
- Holy Esque *
- Roddy Hart & The Lonesome Fire *
- The Twilight Sad *
- United Fruit *
- Mungo’s Hi Fi
- Kode 9
- Hudson Mohawke (added March 6th)
Check out the full schedule on sxsw.com here.
It’s a good mix between first timers and veterans. I’m particularly looking forward to Dave Arcari, who we first wrote about as one of Scotland’s Greatest Ever Guitarists in 2009, and Roddy Hart who I first met back in 2004 when he opened up for the Trash Can Sinatras at my first Scottish Invasion party in East Austin. Roddy has since gone on to much bigger and better things like playing on The Late Late Show last year:
One last thing to note – based on the showcases announced on SXSW.com for these Scottish bands, it looks like there may not be an official Scottish Showcase this year for the first time in a long time.