SXSW for those who can’t go to SXSW

I so wanted to go to the South by Southwest festival this year. Staged in Austin, Texas, it’s actually three festivals in one: interactive, film, and music. While I occasionally look at what’s going on in the interactive world, My focus is solely on the music portion.

I only know a few of the bands who are playing; but as most people who know my taste in music, that’s a good thing. SXSW is known for their unknown artists, those undiscovered jewels hoping for a breakthrough performance. Last year I discovered Nicole Atkins, Stephanie Dosen and Clare & the Reasons, and I’m a better person for it.

In this Web 2.0 age, though, it’s a lot easier to experience the festival without actually getting on a plane and heading to Austin. Here are the best sites to immerse yourself in all that is SXSW:

  • SWSW site. Duh. While not offering a lot of interactivity, it does give you a schedule, summary of events and even a festival map – oh, wait. Never mind. Also check out their Twitter feed and YouTube channel, and after the festival they should have their massive RAR file featuring music from all featured artists.
  • NPR. Your best bet for live music, the site promises exclusive performances throughout the festival. Check out their Twitter feed as well.
  • Local coverage. The Austin American-Statesman’s Austin360.com gives you updates throughout the festival, as does Austinist and Austin Sound Check.

I’ll see you on the other side of the festival. Enjoy.

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