On this day ETB had a short set on the back patio of Headhunters, right before the annual Small Stone Records showcase, which I've attended on and off for almost 10 years.
Began my day catching most of Dave Grohl's SXSW keynote speech live on the internet. Just wow. Talk about inspiration and vailidation. I highly recommend musicians, artists and civilians alike all check it out.
Boss Hoss ran great en route to the venue, and downtown was now in full-on madhouse mode with crowds and street closures, and it was only 4 in the afternoon. We had to drive up Congress to 10th or so, hook back down south on the I-35 access road to get to 8th and Red River St where Headhunter's is.
And a miraculous event occured: an empty parking space on 8th, right next to Headhunter's, the meter good for 6 hours!!!!!!!!!!!!
Let me explain the significance of this. Bands during SXSW have a better chance of landing that sought-after major-label record contract than finding reasonable parking for a gig. It's like winning the lottery. It truly was a SXSW miracle! Not only that, but when we were done playing we could throw the gear into the van to get it out of the way of the 6 or so acts after us!
Boss Hoss as viewed from the load-in door:
So we could actually celebrate our good standing in the Music Poll rather than worry about gear and getting the hell out of downtown right after our set. Again, just wow.
Welcome to SXSW:
And our short set (45 or so) went great. We were on fire. Eric was definitely playing with renewed vigor and confidence (two qualities he certainly does not lack), stepping up and showing why he was voted #2 Guitar Player in town. A crowd steadily gathered on the floor and upstairs in the loft, many of whom were walking by and had to see who was causing all the noise. The Foo Fighters tour bus was parked across the street by Stubb's, and I was hoping Dave Grohl would do the same. But no dice, heh. Drinks were flowing courtesy of some friends from Dallas, and we had a blast.
Loaded gear back into Boss Hoss and went back to the bar. Finally getting to celebrate. Morale was sky high and all of us in good spirits. Caught up with Scott from Small Stone Records before I was too drunk to talk. But this year only caught the first band of the showcase. Left my earplug pouch on the cigarette machine. Oops.
Coordinated with Trinti how she could swing my van around to Headhunters and pick me up so we could catch our good friends Kathy and Ric Furley playing a gig with The Rusticators on the UT Drag. We had never seen them before, and again the parking gods smiled upon us and we found a free meter within a very easy walk.
To the best of my recollection they sounded great. Good to finally see them play after being friends with both of them for many years, heh.
Good times. But now the REAL SXSW experience would begin.