I’m taking a brief sidestep away from UnReidable today to focus on the Scottish music presence at the upcoming South by Southwest Festival. The big news is that for the first time in many years, the Scottish Government will not be supporting Scottish musicians to perform in Austin this year.

Since I started this blog, Dear Scotland has devoted a lot of time to SXSW and it is always one of the musical highlights of the year for me.  Selfishly, as a fan of Scottish music living in Austin, I was disappointed to hear that there would not be an official Scottish Music Showcase at SXSW 2016. The official line is that Creative Scotland are “taking a break”. The website has the following statement on the matter:

“During 2015/16 Creative Scotland are undertaking a comprehensive review of our international activity across the arts, screen and creative industries as we work towards the publication of our first International Strategy in 2016.

Within this context, Creative Scotland are taking a break from producing a dedicated showcase at the 2016 SxSW festival whilst we take stock of our current music showcasing commitments as part of the development of our overarching strategy going forward”.


I reached out to my friend David Weaver, who is a Development Officer at Creative Scotland for comment, but he was unable to add anything to the official position. So, it is what it is.

That being said, there are still 13 Scottish acts from across the musical spectrum for us to enjoy. From electronic to grunge to reggae to pop, this is a great snapshot of contemporary Scotland. Click the name of the artists below for details on their official showcases from sxsw.com, and follow each act on Twitter for their latest news and appearances.

Congratulations to all of them on making it to South by Southwest. See you soon.

Updated: Travis have announced that the World Premiere of a short movie they made for their new album ‘Everything at Once’ will take place during SXSW. Fran Healy will also be there to answer questions. The event is free and badges and wristbands are not required. RSVP and more details here. H/T to Cameron Fordyce in the comments for letting me know.


Photo credit: Hector Bizerk at SXSW 2015 by me. Here is The Spook School: