Let me just start by saying I love SXSW & everything that goes along with it. As an Austinite, I don’t rent my house out to Airbnb, I don’t stay in my 1-mile bubble & I don’t go on vacation. I live for this week. I actually don’t mind the lines, the somewhat annoying drivers, or even the packed venues. Below are just a few of my favorite Austin musicians playing this year’s South By, in no particular order. All 10 musicians/bands listed have at least one FREE show happening so you have no excuse not to check them out. And when they come to a town near you go to their show & buy lots of merch.
So check out my list, have fun, & spend lots of money in Austin. We’ll love you forever 💙
1. Western Youth is the perfect swoon-worthy blend of folk, alt-country, & rock & roll. Keep an eye out for their latest release coming in the Spring of 2018.
2. Harvest Thieves embodies everything I love…guitar-driven, banjo-pickin’, alt-country-folk rock-&-roll with a touch of punk blended perfectly with stellar harmonies. Check out Western Youth & Harvest Thieves both playing The Blackheart on 3/11.
3. Brennen Leigh is not only a smart & gifted singer-songwriter, as Guy Clark says, “Brennen Leigh plays guitar like a mutherf***er.” Americana mixed with country bluegrass & honky tonk, she’s also a founding member of High Plains Jamboree. Plus, she has an amazing sense of retro style.
4. The Peterson Brothers are a modern blend of blues, soul & funk & their live shows feature jam-band style improvisation. They’ve been named the future of Austin music & are some of the most talented musicians around. Aside from playing SXSW, you can catch them at their monthly Continental Club residency, Mondays from 6:30p-8p.
5. Akina Adderley & The Vintage Playboys are a high-energy, soulful experience boasting an 11 player ensemble complete with a horn section. Too good to miss. Put your party pants on & be prepared to shake your money maker.
6. Abhi the Nomad‘s songs catch me right in the chest. His catchy lyrics paired with a touch of indie hip-hop could easily be added to the background of any Wes Anderson movie. Quirky & original videos can be seen on his Facebook page. This guy is one of a kind.
7. Bonnie Whitmore is a feminist anthem singing, rock & roll frontwoman with raucous vocals & mad bass skills. She often has her best gal pals, Betty Soo & Jamiee Harris, both amazing musicians themselves, backing her up on vocals.
8. Croy & The Boys can best be described as quirky country finished off with plenty of accordion & a skootch of keys. Their high energy shows are a must see.
9. Greyhounds are an Austin funk/blues duo that first started playing together in 1999 & are set to release their next album, Cheyenne Valley Drive, April 6th.
10. David Ramirez is an intense singer-songwriter whose music is raw & emotional. Like all of the musicians on this list, he is sooooo good live. He has a great Instagram account where you can witness his eye for detail in fab photos.
BONUS PICK-Rebelle Road SXSW 2018 Showcase featuring a slew of my faves, Ladies Gun Club, Rosie Flores, Brennen Leigh, Jaimee Harris, & Ali Holder just to name a few. It’s a full day of back-to-back fantastic musicians & the perfect way to spend a Wednesday.