AUSTIN, TX- Founded in 1987 in Austin, Texas, SXSW is best known for its conference and festivals that celebrate the convergence of the interactive, film, and music industries. The event, an essential destination for global professionals, features sessions, showcases, screenings, exhibitions, and a variety of networking opportunities. SXSW proves that the most unexpected discoveries happen when diverse topics and people come together.

While Blurred Culture’s attendance at this year’s festival focused on the music, there were plenty of film previews/premiers, tech exhibitions and speakers that attendees were able to experience. Some of the speakers included the cast from “This Is Us”, Bernie Sanders and Elon Musk. Thankfully- for our sake- SXSW has made some of those speaking engagements available to view on their youtube channel.

Now, back to the music.

Many have noticed that SXSW 2018 seemed to have scaled back it’s grandeur even more so that it did in 2017. Blurred Culture attended SXSW last year (for the first time), and even though we focused primarily on the up-and-coming musical acts, opting to avoid one of the hundreds of sponsor-funded, booze fueled parties, we noticed this year that there were fewer corporate installations/activations/showcases. Absent this year was Youtube’s showcase at The Coppertank. Fader Fort was an invite only event at a significantly smaller venue. There were no Lady Gaga, Justin Timerberlake or Drake sightings. Definitely less opportunity to indulge in free booze and tacos, but on the other hand, foot traffic congestion was significantly better (excepted Saturday night on 6th Street, which was absolutely frightening to endure, and caused me call it an early evening) and the wait in lines to enter into venues wasn’t unbearable.

I personally think that the scale-back is just what the music festival needed. SXSW is supposed to be a showcase for those artists we have yet to discover. Sure, getting to see a big ticket act performing in a smaller than normal venue, is cool and all, but at the end of the day, it’s far removed from the ultimate reason why SXSW was started in the first place.

SXSW co-founder/CEO Roland Swenson was once quoted as saying, “It’s not about Kanye ­performing to a thousand people at a corporate event. It sounds corny, but it’s about ‘Remember seeing M.I.A. at a tiny club way back when?” … and that’s exactly the point.

There were still thousands of acts yearning to be heard at SXSW. We had over 440 artists on our list of  “potential” artists to check out, and though we were only able to catch about 20% of them, we’re proud to suggest that we embodied that spirit that Mr. Swenson talked about.  We think we did a pretty good job too of picking some winners as we covered two of the three 2018 Grukle Prize Winners this year (one of the winners twice!).

CLICK THROUGH THE IMAGES BELOW (each one representing a day in Austin) to be directed to all of our thoughts and photo galleries of the recording artists we had the privileged of enjoying this year. It’ll take some time to get it all finished, but hang tight … we’ll get there.

Bully @ Mohawk Austin 3/12/18. SXSW 2018. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
March 12, 2018: Bully, Calliope Musicals, Field Report, Jade Bird, Jerry Williams (Interview), Knox Fortune, Noah Cyrus, Our Girl, Shamir, The Lagoons, The Lagoons (Interview) and Sudan Archives
Thunderpussy @ BD Riley 3/13/18. SXSW 2018. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
March 13, 2018: Bad Gyal, Cut Chemist, Dorothy, Fatai, Jerry Williams, Jhene Aiko, Mallrat, Miguel, Pale Waves, Pussy Riot, Rachel Collier, Starcrawler, Stella Donnelly and Thunderpussy
Starcrawler @ The Main II 3/14/18. SXSW 2018. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
March 14, 2018: August Greene, Billie Eilish, Flyte, Joey Dosik, Kolars, Lawrence, Lola Marsh, Low, Lucy Dacus, Marlon Williams, Nattlie Prass, Okkervil River, Plastic Pinks, Saint Sister, Superorganism, Tank and the Bangas and Wye Oak
Nathaniel Rateliff @ Luck Reunion 3/15/18. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
March 15, 2018: Action Bronson, Blank Range, Courtney Marie Andrews, Cuco, Ezra Furman, Frank Turner, Hiss Golden Messenger, Hop Along, Jade Bird, Kurt Vile, Kyle Craft, Lukas Nelson, Mt. Joy, Nathaniel Ratcliff, Nikki Lane, Sam Lewis, Texas Gentlemen, The Frights, Victoria Canal, WAVVES and Willie Nelson
Keith Urban @ Stubb's 3/16/18. SXSW 2018. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
March 16, 2018: Aiming For Enrike, Andrew W.K., Billie Eilish, Billy Strings, Bun B, Devon Gilfillian, Emma White, Hop Along, Jamie Kent, Keith Urban, Killa Kyleon, Kitten, Larkin Poe, Lauren Ruth Ward, Le$, Lil’ Flip, Melody Guy, Nellen Dryden, R.Lum.R., Scotty ATL, Sylvan Esso, The Shacks, Truett, Tyler Childress and Waker
Albert Hammond Jr. @ Lustre Pearl 3/17/18. SXSW 2018. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
March 17, 2018: Albert Hammond Jr., Annabelle Chairlegs, Chris Price, Dave East, Deva Mahal, Doe, Just Blaze, Larkin Poe, Larkin Poe (Interview), Martin O’Reilly, Mint Field, Night Beats, Ramonda Hammer, Rapsody, Spare Parts For Broken Hearts, Telephone Lovers, T.I. and Trae Tha Truth

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SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
Action Bronson @ SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
Action Bronson @ SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Phhoto by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Phhoto by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
Steve Aoki @ SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
Steve Aoki @ SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Mike Golembo (@Instalembo) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
SXSW 2018. Atmosphere. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.

 

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