Thursday 31 Jul

Power Pyramid - The God Drums

Power Pyramid doesn’t have much patience for nonsense. That appears to be the takeaway from the Oklahoma City quintet’s last 10 months, which brought The God Drums in September, the Insomnia EP in January and its latest, self-titled effort in July.

07/29/2014 | Comments 0

TJ Mayes - "When Love Comes Down"

’50s era rock ’n’ roll had been long overdue for a rebirth. Thankfully, the stockpile of capable luminaries has not been in short supply over the past few years. 

07/23/2014 | Comments 0

Boare - "playdatshit"

The world is in the midst of an electronic music renaissance, and you find most of this boon of producers laying claim to the club-friendly, bass-dropping variety, holing up in the the free-flowing world of hip-hop beatmaking or pitching their tent on the out-there, boundary-pushing EDM camp.
07/23/2014 | Comments 0

Broncho - "Class Historian"

Broncho has never been hurting in the hook department. The success of the trio’s 2011 debut, Can’t Get Past the Lips, was predicated mostly on its ability to marry melodies with kinetic guitar riffs and anarchic energy. Yet we’ve heard nothing to the degree of pure pop catchiness on display in “Class Historian,” the new single from Broncho’s upcoming sophomore album, Just Enough Hip to Be Woman.
07/23/2014 | Comments 0

Manmade Objects - Monuments

No one wants to be forgotten; everyone wants some sort of legacy, a mark they leave behind as they exit this life for whatever lies beyond.

And for as long as there has been death, there have been monuments — whether austere or understated, abstract or concrete, prominent or tucked away in private — erected by the ones they loved to assure that remembrance, at least for a time.
07/15/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Music · Music · Okie music, Texas flavor

Okie music, Texas flavor

South by Southwest is the largest festival of its kind in the world. Oklahoma’s contribution to the Austin-based event brings the world’s focus onto our state, too.

Zach Hale and Jennifer Chancellor March 5th, 2014

Everything’s bigger in Texas, they say. From the skyscrapers adorning its cityscapes to the vast plains stretching from the panhandle to the Gulf of Mexico, the adage largely holds true.

Skating Polly

The state’s platform for Oklahoma artists is no exception, thanks, in large part, to Austin’s South by Southwest, the largest film, interactive and music conference in the world.

If you didn’t already know, the event is a big deal.

According to a SXSW fact sheet, a whopping 56 countries are represented at this year’s festival, which takes place at hundreds of venues throughout the city March 7-16. Over the course of the two-week event, more than 300,000 people come through Austin just for SXSW.

Nearly 10,000 bands applied to perform, yet only 2,278 made the cut. Dozens of the latter are Oklahoma-tied acts chosen to participate in official and unofficial showcases during the music portion of the festival March 11-15.

Buffalo Lounge takes Oklahoma to Austin 

Each year, an exclusive showcase called The Buffalo Lounge presents dozens of Oklahoma bands, interactive businesses and projects and movie-related events throughout.

“This is important for Oklahoma,” Buffalo Lounge co-creator David Kittredge said, “because we get a national and global audience.”

Kittredge and another event co-founder, Ginger Roddick, both also work for Idea Collective, a creative think-tank for music, business and design located in Oklahoma City, Austin and New York City.

Abby Kurin of the Tulsa Film & Music Office also helped co-found the concept four years ago and pitched it to South by Southwest organizers. Each year, the group takes over a venue, and each year, the response and attendance has grown — from 4,000 in 2010, its inaugural year, to more than 8,000 last year, including music, interactive and movie portions.

This year, the Lounge takes over The Avenue on Congress, a bar and club located at 408 Congress Ave., March 11 and 12 for a total of four Oklahoma-only showcases — two each day and two each night.

Kurin and her team also work with SXSW organizers to hand-pick Oklahoma-tied applicants for non-music showcases. For example, local singer-songwriter Chelsea Cope — who acted in the Oklahoma-filmed movie Rudderless and whose music appeared on the soundtrack — will perform during the movie portion of Buffalo Lounge presentations.

As the Lounge’s presence continues to grow, so too does the venue, going from one level to two, which allows for twice as many visitors, bands and activities. It’s complete with outdoor signs and window decals and interior decor; the former bar, for that week, is gone.

There are a total of 191 official SXSW venues in downtown Austin, but not every state or city or organization that requests a showcase gets one.

Oklahoma has earned that right. 

“So many people think, ‘Oh, no big deal; Kentucky has one,’ or, ‘Tennessee or Mexico has one,’ or ‘Every state has something this unique at South by Southwest,’” Kurin said. “Most do not.”

Half (OK, maybe a quarter) of the fun is getting there 

Now that you’re properly amped up for this year’s events, let’s talk about other important parts of SXSW — like, say, how to get there.

You could fly, but where’s the fun in that? This is a road-trippin’ affair. Load up your iPod (preferably with Oklahoma artists), fill up your tank and mosey on over to Interstate 35. It’s a straight shot down to Austin, so unseasoned travelers will need some guidance.

No hotel booked? Don’t even bother; they’re all full by now. If you have friends in Austin, surely they have a couch (or a floor) for you to recharge on. If not, make friends and find a couch (or a floor) to recharge on. Some patrons sleep in their cars or, worse, at the bus station, but it’s not recommended.

The drive is a breezy six hours or so, though you’ll undoubtedly need to make some stops. Thankfully, choice dining options are aplenty. Smokin’ Joe’s Rib Ranch (5164 Jollyville Rd. in Davis) will whet your barbecue palette as you prepare to enter cookout country. A few hours later, load up on kolaches and other goodies at the world-renowned Czech Stop (105 N. College Ave., West, Texas). A word to the wise: this place will change your life.

Before you hit the Czech Stop, however, cinephiles will want to stop by the Days Inn in Hillsboro, Texas (307 S. East I-35), an iconic setting for much of Wes Anderson’s debut film Bottle Rocket.

As you creep closer to Austin, those without a couch to crash on can stop at the IKEA in Round Rock (1 Ikea Way — yeah, it has its own street) and purchase their own. Assembly required.

The best piece of advice we can give you, however, is that you just drive safely.

You made it. Now what? 

Buffalo Lounge happenings begin Monday with the film and interactive day parties, which are free and open to the public, but if you have one of those fancy SXSW badges, you get preferred entry. Just make sure to RSVP to any event through the Buffalo Lounge website.

Music stuff starts Tuesday, as the official SXSW day party, Oklahoma Soundcheck, kicks things off with a bevy of local talent. If indie pop is your vice, you’ll want to catch Tulsa trio Summit, OKC’s IndianGiver and the glitzy sheen of Norman’s Prettyboy. For roof-raising hip-hop, check out Norman collective ADDverse Effects or OKC’s Skating Polly for hair-raising riot-rock. Singer-songwriters are aplenty as well, with the talents of Chelsey Cope, Sherree Chamberlain, Mark Gibson, Rachel La Vonne and Kyle Reid to serenade those in attendance.

And we’re just getting started. The Oklahoma Showcase — the first official SXSW exhibit — is from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. Tuesday, and the lineup features some of Oklahoma’s brightest musicians. Between the folksy stylings of John Fullbright, Parker Millsap and crooner John Moreland, rockers Taddy Porter and Deerpeople and soulful throwbacks Matt Stansberry & the Romance, the talent on display is sure to impress even the snobbiest Austin hipster.

Want more? Wednesday is just as stacked. The Oklahoma Remix day party starts with a panel discussion from 11 a.m. to noon and then picks right back up where day one left off. Rock fans will revel in the facemelting sounds of OKC’s Moongiant or local trio Aluma, while electronica enthusiasts will want to check out Colin Nance and Travis Traps. For a little more funk, catch Oklahoma City’s Bowlsey and Oklahoma Gazette cover boy/rapper Josh Sallee. Singer-songwriters Rachel Brashear, Kaitlin Butts and Scott AF round out the bill, along with an encore acoustic performance from the girls of Skating Polly.

Wednesday night’s last hurrah is the ACM@UCO Showcase, which aims to send the Lounge out with a bang. The bill features singersongwriters Travis Linville and Aaron Pierce, Oklahoma luminaries like hip-hopper Jabee and psych-rockers Colourmusic and indie-pop up-andcomers Horse Thief and Tallows, who were arguably the most buzzed-about performers at last year’s event.

After The Buffalo Lounge events wind down, you are free to do as you wish. By that point, you should at least be able to rest easy knowing some of the finest artists this state has to offer were on display for the world to see. And you’ll need some rest before doing it again next year.

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