Every March, what remains of the music industry descends on Austin, Texas, to feast on the dreams of the crowd that is laying waste to the city. Desperate bands from around the world flock to the annual SXSW Music Film Interactive megafest, most at their own expense, so they can display their own special flavor of generic indie-pop for nothing or next to nothing. Do you think they’ll be “discovered” during their 10 AM set at a pool party?
Miller Lite, Chevrolet, IFC, Pepsi, and Doritos sponsor this annual blowjob contest because they love independent music, and they love independent music because it is so great. It is constantly challenging audiences with questions like, “It’s our sound guy’s birthday, would you finger his butthole?” and “Is my guitar sound too bottom-heavy for you guys out there?” and “What do you mean this pass doesn’t get me into the afterparty, dude, didn’t you see me play?” After razing the city and sowing salt in the earth, the bands drive home in silence, each member alone with his or her poverty, addictions, and venereal disease, their ill deeds already forgotten. Meanwhile, Austin’s citizens wander past overturned cars, melted lawn furniture, and dogs choking on discarded wristbands. Tears wet their honest faces as they survey the ruins and wonder, once again, how to rebuild their lives.
Buzz at this year’s SXSW surrounds the return of Fiona Apple, some band called Tennis who licensed a song to Grey’s Anatomy, and a lot more murderously boring horseshit no one cares about. Representing hip-hop, fresh newcomers Jay-Z and 50 Cent are keeping the art form strong and dynamic with def concepts for the 21st century. Also on offer are many informative seminars on how to use social media. Friends, I have heard tell of these so-called “social networking” sites on the “world wide web.” It’s all Greek to me, but apparently the interfaces, though simple enough for a small child to master, have occult functions that can make many strangers want to buy your terrible song. If you attend any of these seminars, please send me detailed notes on the secret keyboard shortcut that hypnotizes suckers.
Tennis song on “Grey’s Anatomy”
Up-and-comers not already stuffed from chowing down at this banquet of ideas can learn yet more about the music business at the St. Patrick’s Day interview with Insane Clown Posse. Brilliant conversationalists Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope are renowned for their thoughtful analysis of market trends and their penetrating insight into the spiritual power of song. Perhaps they will shed more light on the complex process of setting up a Twitter account.
ICP High Times interview
The best attendees can hope for is that the Boss’ keynote address will be more coherent than Bob Geldof’s speech was at last year’s SXSW. Saint Bob wondered where rock and roll’s power to articulate “the necessity, the desirability, the inevitability of change” had gone. The multimillionaire jokingly acknowledged that you won’t “make a living out of the fuckin’ thing,” said that rock and roll was likely over and done (“It is [America’s] great cultural gift to the world. But it may be over. It might just be that your gift was a 50-year pop, and I was so lucky to get in on this game halfway through its life”), and asserted that we are living through the historical moment “when power ebbed from the West to the East after 500 years of constant growth.” Geldof periodically interrupted his obituary for Western culture, and all the conditions that made rock and roll (“the full-throated roar of capitalism itself”) possible, with senile non sequiturs: “Where are our Ramones and our Pistols today?” “I don’t hear the disgust in music!” “Where’s the danger?” Strange talk, coming from the man who wrote “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” But if rock is a dead genre that doesn’t pay, why on earth would Geldof expect to find the new Sex Pistols at SXSW? Didn’t he know he was addressing a crowd of hacks who were there to sell tinkly piano lullabies to TV networks? Like these saps would be motivated to cough up serious work, if only he could make them understand that there’s no money or fame in it? Why aren’t you kids doing anything interesting in this dead medium?
Please, no more pieties about this shameful fuckfest. Just cancel that shit.
Bob Geldof 2011 Keynote Address
Previously - Dave Mustaine - #1 Twat