Saturday, March 17, 2007

Wrapping things up

Happy St Patrick's Day!

Rufus and me - we're beat, we went back home but the rest of the crew is still out there will the thousands of others wandering the streets of downtown Austin with every bar (it seems) having live music. There are bands playing on street corners, in empty lots, parking lots, alleys - any place they can set up the city is just full of music.

We're all done - SXSW wore us down and it wins, we have been beaten. I think our crazy schedule on Friday just did it for us and sapped our strength.

The day started with The Palm School Choir at an outdoor festival. The kids only did a couple of songs but they did cover The Who's "Pinball Wizard" which was pretty cool.

In the afternoon we had The Watson Twins come over and we had cake for their birthday! We also taped an interview with Rufus - of course - and then some karaoke!

After dropping them off at their hotel a couple of us hit Congress Street for some wandering and shopping. Gorgeous sunny day, it was great for walking around town. We found some cool little shops up by The Continental Club that the Dansettes played at our first night and picked up a couple of presents to take home. Then we had some Very Fine Food at Hut's Hamburgers.

This evening we brought all the gear (we could carry) downtown and interviewed The Detroit Cobras, and a member of The Mekons that was playing SXSW with her new band. (I had to go find parking so I missed the beginning of the interview so I can't tell you her name. Those clubs are LOUD so even if somebody tried to tell me I probably wouldn't have heard it properly.)

(Note to self: ear plugs = wise investment)

Then we headed with Rufus to the Light Club where Northern State was performing - and Rufus got on stage for one last freestyle battle with the gals. They are a lot of fun. I don't know how the tape looks but if the sound and the lighting worked out it is going to be really funny stuff.

Ace, The Joker and G weren't ready to call it quits but I'm suffering from sensory overload, I need some quiet! So Rufus and I got a bike ride back to our van (cause I can't carry all that gear by myself! I mean, I'd try but that would be sorta cruel) and then sat in traffic for a decent amount of time to get out of downtown. We're trying to get OUT and everyone else is trying to get IN!

SXSW has been great - we met a lot of new bands and had a lot of fun with the interviews and karaoke, I hope the videos get online soon cause some of the stuff is absolutely hilarious. But I'm tired, and I'm ready to go home now. It's one thing to come to a festival for pleasure but we've been in work mode for most of the time (this afternoon was a nice break) and that wears you out pretty quick. Well, it wears me out anyway :)

Thanks again to all the bands that allowed up to tape their performances and who came by for interviews - and for all the bands we missed we're really sorry, hopefully we can meet up when you come to Washington DC.

And so - from Austin, Texas at the South By SouthWest Music Festival this is Tracy signing OUT!

- t

Friday, March 16, 2007

wow wow WOW

What a day it has been! (and it's not over yet)

And how did our day of interviews end? With us meeting and shaking hands with HILLARY CLINTON! If Rufus wasn't already waiting in the van for us we'd have grabbed her for an interview. We were pysched - Amy and I did a little happy dance.

Okay - we start the day setting up at the Four Seasons where Billboard Magazine happens to be hosting this huge outside "acoustic brunch" with music and food and tons of guys wearing skinny legs jeans with tossled hair and sunglasses. We probably walked by lots of rock stars without even knowing it - they had breakfast tacos, we do have priorities!

It was Rufus Interviews from 10-6 - revolving bands! We began with the Victorian English Gentlemens Club performing a song with Rufus (Bang The Tin - a modified version of their song "Bang The Gin"). They were great (of course) and we liked them a lot.

The super cool chicks from The Dansettes were next - they picked an Elvis song to sing karaoke with Rufus. Fun Time People. They were a bright spot (literally) in a sea of black clothes with their matching yellow dresses (loved the shoes ladies).

Manomena was next - I don't think they knew exactly what they were getting into at first but they got into the spirit and performed their pessimist song to cheer up Rufus.

Northern State did some freestyle rhyme with Rufus - they really mixed it up! I think Rufus has a crush on them, they were FUN FUN FUN, we hope to see them perform.

The Annuals came in for karaoke - Crazy Little Thing Called Love. A six member band and none of them over 20!

After we wrapped up with the Annuals we all escaped for a much needed 30 minutes break and enjoyed sitting outside listening to the music and enjoying the open bar. Oh, and the view too, the hotel is located right on the river, it was really very beautiful. Course, sitting outside the Four Seasons with a mimosa in your hand enjoying the music and the sun - how can you go wrong? Amy did a little roll down this hill but she did it on purpose, she's that kind of crazy gal!

(There are orchids in the bathrooms. And real towels - no paper here. Fancy!)

Sara Wasserman was our first interview after our break - and she sang an acoustic songn to Rufus.

Chin Up Chin Up banged out a heartfelt version of Madonna's Material Girl. Not bad for an all-boy band!

Persephone's Bees came by and we were really excited about them performing for us (since we had seen them the other night play live) but they mislaid their guitar player so we had to settle for karaoke - the Beatles Eight Days A Week. (You guys forgot your t-shirts and dvds - email me an address and I'll send them to you!)

Aesop Rock were next and did some rappin' with Rufus (Rufus is really quite good with freestyling, can't wait to see the videos of all of these.)

And - last but CERTAINLY not least were THE EMERALDS (and you have to write it in all caps because you can't say their name you MUST SCREAM IT. YEAH!) They are from Japan and they were without their translator - so the interview was hilarious with Rufus trying to get what little Japanese he knows pronounced correctly (look, I'm telling you, this sheep is a multi-talented! he keeps surprising me!) and with what little English they knew. They tie for BEST DRESSED with The Dansettes - cause while the Dansettes had the cool mod 50s look going on the EMERALDS were rocking it out in the black leather suits and sparkly shirts. Fab U Lous.

And - as if an interview with a Japanese band that doesn't speak much english wasn't enough they did karaoke with Rufus - AC/DC's "Hell's Bells" It was amazing. A perfect ending to our very long day.

(and then Hillary walked by and we went a little nuts, and then we left.)

Thanks so much to all the bands, you all were really great and we appreciate you taking the time to come by for interviews and putting up with us :)

We're crashing back at Chez Pancake right now - living it up with frozen pizza and champagne. (No, I'm not kidding.) But we're only resting up before heading out again tonight to tape The Watson Twins and hopefully have enough energy to make it to the VEGC set too. The EMERALDS are playing at 1:00am and as much as we would all love love love to see them perform I can't see any of us staying up that late. We shall see if any of us get a second wind.

Right - tomorrow doesn't look as crazy as today (but my copy of the schedule isn't the one being updated so I could be really wrong about that) with:

* The Palm School Choir
* The Watson Twins (It's their birthday! Happy Birthday!)
* Asobi Seksui
* Dengue Fever
* The Detriot Cobras

Okay, the pizza is almost done. Our contacts in DC report that the weather there is horrible with snow this afternoon while we are enjoying beautiful weather here in Austin. Sorry guys!

This is tracy signing out for the night

- t

big day

Yesterday Rufus interviewed The Thunderbirds Are Now and did a couple songs karaoke with them, it was fun.

That afternoon we went downtown with the camera for some "man on the street" interviews and got to meet Daniel Johnston and watch him perform.

We stopped in at the Sire Party last night, saw Old Time Relijun perform at Emos, and then stopped into the Blender party and saw Midnight Movies.

Menomena was playing at Buffalo Billiards at 1 am but we just couldn't make it - Rufus needs his beauty rest. The streets were still packed with people at midnight when we packed up our gear and headed back home. Yes, we are lame. Yes, we are old. But we're working! This isn't a pleasure cruise (not really though we did have some good BBQ for dinner.)

Today is just JAM PACKED with bands. We've got an interview room set up from 10-6 and bands coming in every 30 minutes. Revolving Door of Musical Goodness! Some of the bands on our list for today:

The Victorian English Gentlemens Club
The Dansettes
Northern State
The Annuals
Sara Wasserman
Chin Up Chin Up
The Emeralds
Genghis Tron
and The Watson Twins

We start at 10 am and our last show is at 11:55 pm. Wow.

Hopefully somewhere in there we've got time for a nap. Or that there is a steady stream of espresso at the hotel to keep us all jumping! We're packing up the gear right now and downing some coffee to get us up and running. It's going to be a great day but I'm sure we're all going to be wiped out at the end of it.

And we still have a full day of bands anad interviews on Saturday! Will we make it? Can we do it?

Stay Tuned...

- tracy

Thursday, March 15, 2007

We're here! All the gear arrived okay - and all of us as well. We're renting a house just a couple minutes away from downtown so it's Pancake Mountain Central here.

(I'm sleeping in one of the kid's room - not only do I have bunk beds but the added bonus of an IGUANA! Yeah! Luckily he's been fed for this week and doesn't require are care from us.)

It was raining when we arrived but it turned into a mist for most of the afternoon - it didn't seem to damper any spirits of the people wandering the streets and the bands already playing. By sundown it had cleared up and the streets were closed as the festival began in earnest.

We did lots of walking around checking out the various clubs - and people. Some of the clubs had huge lines outside of people waiting to get in to see a band but when we walked further away from the center of action we were able to walk right into clubs without any problem.

We went to the Continental Club and saw The Dansettes - they were so much fun! Great sound, dark club, very little light, cool dance moves.

Then off to the Molotov Lounge to see the Persephone's Bees, I think we ended up shooting that entire set. I didn't get many photos due to the low lighting again but being short didn't help much either. (Clubs: please put the bands on some riser or stage so us short people can see something besides the backs of peoples heads.)

We are scheduled to interview both bands tomorrow so I'll get some good shots with them and Rufus.

Oh yeah, Rufus is here with us! He stayed back at the house last night and worked on his interview questions while watching the owls out back. I think he tried out the jacuzi tub too.

Today on our schedule we've got:
*The Thunderbirds Are Now!
*Dengue Fever
*Oxford Collapse
*Old TIme Relijun

Busy busy busy


Wednesday, March 14, 2007


heading to the airport. All gear has been packed and re-packed, inventoried, labeled, counted, and then inventoried again.

Some of the bands we are going to be meeting:

and a list of others! Our schedule looks a little crazy - lots of bands! WE ARE REALLY EXCITED. (Except for the getting up before the sun. I could do without that.)

Off to the airport then. Austin here we come!

- tracy

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Making a list, checking it twice...

We're packing up the gear and getting ready to hit Austin. Of course there are a billion things for us to do to get ready and take care of before we leave but I'm at least able to find some time in there to be excited about the trip. Those other guys? I'll ask them the next time they come up for air.

A short video clip of Jake and Paddy from the Sister Scissors with the infamous Rufus Leaking is now online - link on our homepage.

And Charlotte from the subways thinks we're "awesome" - - thanks Charlotte, we thought you were pretty cool too!

back to work now...

- tracy