SXSW 2015 – Day 3 Recap

We’ve reached the halfway point of SXSW 2015, and for the first time in all the years I have been traveling to Austin I still feel fairly energized and excited for the days ahead. This may due to the fact I haven’t drank a drop of alcohol since touching down, which is often considered a crazy idea at a festival where liquor and beer is free in every other bar on Sixth street most of the day, but as someone who got a root canal the day before flying here I just haven’t wanted to add a hangover to the aches I already feel. That was probably more than you needed to know about my life, right? These things have to start somehow, and today this is what I came up with, but tomorrow it’ll be something else. I promise.

Anyways, my third day at SXSW was a busy one. Having spent another late night at shows and events I awoke roughly 45 minutes before my first panel and rushed to pull myself together before heading to the Austin Convention Center. The discussion was centered around big data, but unfortunately didn’t touch on anything I hadn’t heard the day before in a discussion about the future of music discovery. I said this once before, but the biggest theme in the sessions I’ve attended is new companies relying on data to better service music fans with discovery options. This isn’t an innovative notion by any means, but it will be interesting to see who makes the most of this plan in the year ahead and who introduces something truly forward-thinking.

After this I caught a number of sets from some great promising bands, including Rozwell Kid, Beartooth, and the hip-hop trio known as Migos. It was an interesting afternoon of live music, but it gave me some great insight on how different genres approach performances. I want to write about it more, but I have a separate blog in the works on this very concept so I’m going to move on for the time being.

With night came another whirlwind of showcases, screenings, and conversations. At one point I spent thirty minutes discussing the future of branding streaming services in relation to live music. Venues around the world play music in between sets, so why aren’t services like Spotify and Rdio entering partnerships? If Uber wants a piece of streaming, I’m sure there are venues that would love to say they work with those services as well.

I know this update is a little shorter than previous days, but I don’t want to be too repetitive in my recaps. Tomorrow’s will be longer, so read some of my other posts from this week and check in around noon tomorrow to learn what happened in Austin on Friday night.

James Shotwell

James Shotwell is the Director of Customer Engagement at Haulix and host of the company's podcast, Inside Music. He is also a public speaker known for promoting careers in the entertainment industry, as well as an entertainment journalist with over a decade of experience. His bylines include Rolling Stone, Alternative Press, Substream Magazine, Nu Sound, and Under The Gun Review, among other popular outlets.