The South By Southwest festival kicks off tomorrow, and like many recent editions of the music/film/web industry shindig, the 2012 version will feature a lot of Canadian content.
SXSW, as the gathering is known, takes place every year in Austin, Texas, and began life in 1987 as an independent music festival. Since then, it has expanded to include film and multimedia components, though the hundreds of musical performances throughout the city is still the defining feature of the week-long event.
In recent years, Canadian bands have had a significant presence in Austin, and this year is no different: A quick scan of the list of bands playing SXSW include established acts such as Metric, Stars, Plants & Animals and Shout Out Out Out to up-and-comers like Eight and a Half and Bahamas.
Helping sort through all of the Canadian musical content at SXSW is Canadian Blast, a showcase and BBQ taking place next Wednesday in the middle of the festival, and Canada House, the HQ for all things related to the Great White North at SXSW, located in Austin's Trinity Hall.
You can also download a sampler of Canadian Blast artists playing the festival courtesy of the Migrate music site.
Also appearing at the Interactive component of the festival is Canadian author, innovator and futurist thinker Don Tapscott, who will kick off SXSW Interactive tomorrow with a talk called "Rethinking Civilization For The Social Age." Looking at the impact that social media will have on many of our society's foundational institutions, Don's talk will touch on themes already introduced in his book "MarcroWikinomics: Rebooting Business And The World."
Don was in the red chair last year to talk to George about how evolving trends in technology will affect our daily lives, and also took some time to share his thoughts with us about how tech-savvy kids are getting a bum rap:
Toronto's Young Empires, who will be playing at SXSW next Friday, were also on the show recently. Here they are playing "White Doves" in our studio:
SXSW acts Eight and a Half will be on our show tomorrow night, with Plants & Animals appearing next week - don't forget to check them out!
Here is a partial list of the other Canadian acts scheduled to play the festival. For a more comprehensive list, check for updates at the SXSW website:
3 Inches of Blood
Cuff the Duke
Delhi 2 Dublin
Eight and a Half
Great Lake Swimmers
Half Moon Run
Plants and Animals
Shout Out Out Out
The Barr Brothers
Uncle Bad Touch