Thursday, March 22, 2012

SxSW Day 6

Wednesday, March 14


Panels

Providencia on the Day Stage

This band from Columbia played some potent Reggae and Cumbia. Without a doubt, they were one of the best, day-stage bands that I saw during SxSWm.

Providencia

Adventures in Songwriting with Paul Williams

With my recently adventures in songwriting, this was a not to be missed panel. I'm old enough to remember Paul, but I never realized how prolific he had been with his songwriting.

Paul was fantastic, and delivered a very engaging interview. What made this really special, was the he brought his musical director and piano player with him, and stopped at various points throughout the hour, to punctuate his stories with the actual songs.

Before the panel, I had been sitting on the fence about going to see his movie. Afterwards, there was no question about going.

Paul Williams

Downloaded: The SxSW Interview

This was an interesting panel discussing a soon to be released documentary, Downloaded, directed by Alex Winters (Bill of Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure fame).

The movie is about Napster, the creation of Sean Parker, and Shawn Fanning. Having lived through this era, I was somewhat aware of the history, but I'm certain I go watch this film when it is released.

Sean Parker, Shawn Fanning, Alex Winters

Films

Paul Williams Still Alive

This was another great, music oriented, biographical documentary. I have developed a new found respect for Paul Williams, after watching this film. Hell, I would even contemplate going to see him perform now.

Kudos to director, Stephen Kessler, for making this film work. I'm not sure another director could have pulled this off.



Still Alive Paul Williams

Bernie

This film is loosely based on a true story, about events that took place in Carthage, Texas, in the mid 90's. The main character Bernie Tierde, was an effeminate, former mortician, who became the companion of a older widow, and eventually murdered her.

The film reunites Richard Linklater with Jack Black. It's the type of dark comedy, that's right up my alley. Richard supposedly went to Tiede's trial, and has been in contact with him in prison.

An added bonus with this film was the fact that my friend, Graham Reynolds, did the soundtrack for this film.



Bernie Q and A

Music

Stubbs

I spent the first part of the first real evening of SxSWm, at Stubbs. I wanted to see a bit of Alabama Shakes' set before heading over to see Thomas Dolby.

  • Sharon Van Etten
  • I had seen Sharon two years ago, as a solo act over at St. David's. This time she had a band. She still has an incredibly haunting voice.

  • Dan Deacon - 2 drummers and DJ from Balto.
  • Even though I was tempted to give these guys a pass, because they were from my home town, I can't say I really enjoyed this set.

  • Alabama Shakes
  • Perhaps the hype for this band is a little overdone. None the less, there was a lot of roots rock goodness on display.


Thomas Dolby at the JR

I totally fucked up on this one, missing the opportunity to see Thomas at a day party. From all accounts, that appearance was fantastic.

The night time performance I chose, was one of two showcases that he was doing. It was located at the JR's, or the club formerly known as Emo's.

Thomas and band took the stage almost a half hour later than they should have. Of course, there were insurmountable sound problems, and they never really got things straightened out. They played through their set, but you could tell that Dolby was visibly annoyed at the sound crew.

One of these years, I'll get to see him under better conditions.




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