Austin, Texas is an exciting place to be during the month of March. Each year, the city hosts the world-renowned South by Southwest (SXSW) series of film and music festivals and conferences. The tradition began in 1987, and has grown in scope each year. Despite the fact that the city of Austin was not considered to be in the top 20 major market at the time, it has since grown to host the leading industry event. Austin has always been a city full of talent and eclectic musical tastes, but their biggest obstacle was being ostracized from the rest of the world. SXSW was a way to change that.
Not only does SXSW showcase some of the most talented artists in the music industry, both well known and up-and-coming, it also introduces some of the most innovative and advanced technology. Today, SXSW has over 28,000 conference participants, quadrupling their mere 700 applicants in their opening year. Sixteen industry professionals — half of whom make up the conference team, while the other half organize the festival — are SXSW’s “corporate” environment.
SXSW will take place this year during the week of March 17 through March 22, and the festival has already announced their 2015 lineup. The mega-fest announced their first round of talent this Wednesday, October 22 on their official website. This preliminary lineup includes talent from Australia, the UK, and Spain, to name just a few. The first-round lineup includes artists such as Jessie Ware, hailing from London, Weekend Money from New York City, Agosto from Argentina, and Be Forest from Italy. The lineup includes over 100 artists and bands.
In correspondence with their lineup release, SXSW has also unveiled a list of some conference events that will be taking place during the jam-packed week in March. Some of the conferences include: 100 Years From Now: Preserving Pop Music History, Books are the New Vinyl, Breaking Through the Noise with a Successful Synch, and Got My Mojo Workin’: The Musical Legacy of Muddy Waters and the Chicago Blues.
In 2014 SXSW had 55,000 guests in attendance for their music showcases, 3,198 for their interactive conferences and sessions, 2,084 for their film and media features, 65,00 for tradeshow and exhibit spaces, and, finally, 43,000 for their music gear expo. The festival gains approximately 15% of new guests each year, so it is expected that the 2015 festival will be their biggest, and most exciting yet!