Serving the city of Austin, Tex., as a music industry magnet for its twenty-sixth year, SXSW 2012 (South by Southwest) is back in action. Featuring three different categories -- music, interactive and film -- the event showcases Austin's eclectic music scene as well as the high-tech companies that fuel the lucrative industry.
Though SXSW is known as a central hub for anything and everything that is new and innovative in entertainment world, its early history pegs the event as something much different.
Austin was not a Top 20 major market in 1987, SXSW's first year. The convention was put on in order to bring big industry players to Austin to do business.
It's sufficient to say they succeeded. Drawing massive appeal from businesses on both coasts, Austin's music scene encompasses a wide variety of talent, including country, folk, jazz, blues and rock.
And with Central Austin now boasting more original-music nightclubs in a concentrated area than any other city in the world, the city's gearing up to host an event that has grown from 700 registrants in 1987 to over 16,000 in its latest showing.
But even with the massive expansion of the festival over the years, the show still stays true to its local roots.
Conference gatherings include everything from screenings of films made by local filmmakers to showcases of the best Tex-Mex food in the city. It even offers a Move to Austin Meet-Up, an insider's perspective on how you can land a job in the Texas city.
With over a week full of fun events, SXSW is easily the best way to experience the city of Austin, Tex. and everything it has to offer.
Check out these 10 great events at SXSW 2012 that put a spotlight on the The Live Music Capital of the World.
The Taco Table -- Featuring some of Austin's best Tex-Mex options, the Taco Table at SXSW 2012 will be on display Friday, March 9, at 12:30 p.m. at Palm Park (711 East 3rd Street -- just one block from the Austin Convention Center). For $25, you can gain access to this top-notch interactive event, which allows you to sample some killer Tex-Mex from some of the city's most well-known restaurants. Participating in the event are local Austin eateries such as Taco Deli, Habanero Mexican Café and Matt's Famous El Rancho. Aside from taking in some of Austin's best Tex-Mex, guests will be able to network with fellow like-minded food connoisseurs.
The Austin Tech Incubator Landscape -- In celebration of what SXSW 2012 is truly about, The Austin Tech Incubator Landscape features a panel of speakers that represents the entrepreneurial environment that Greater Austin enjoys today. With the number of entrepreneurs in Austin constantly growing, so are the number of industries in which they take part. The Austin Tech Incubator Landscape, taking place on Tues., March 13, at the Hilton Austin Downtown, is about what the future of Austin has to offer as to what types of companies are being developed and who the people are behind these programs. Speakers include Bryan Menell of Capital Factory, Mellie Price of Source Spring, Isaac Barchas of ATI, Mark Pannes of RaptorAccelerator and Steve Guengerich of BroadBrush Ventures.
Move to Austin Meet-Up - This year at SXSW 2012, HomeAway is hosting the Move to Austin Meet-Up. The program allows you to learn how you can land a job in the beautiful city of Austin by providing you with an insider perspective on life and work in Central Texas. The meet-up will take place on Tuesday, March 13 at the Austin Convention Center between 3 - 4 p.m.
Foodspotting Street Food Fest - Chow.com brings you the Foodspotting Street Food Fest at SXSW. The event, taking place Saturday, March 10 between 4-10 p.m., will feature Austin's finest food trucks, a VIP Lounge, Karaoke cabaret, and special celebrity guest. Foodspotting, the popular social media application which allows you to find and recommend dishes and restaurants in any given area, is hosting the event at SXSW for the third consecutive year.
ShortCase 2012 - On Saturday, March 10, between 11-12:30 a.m. in the Cannon Screening room, The Austin Film Society will announce ShortCase 2012. The program of short films of all genres by AFS members is to be shown during the SXSW Film and Interactive Festival. The Austin Film Society is a nationally-renowned non-profit film organization that has been devoted to showing great films in Austin and supporting great Texas filmmakers for over 25 years.
BBQ Crash Course - From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Friday March 9, SXSW and Dishola host the fourth annual BBQ Crash Course. The special event allows you to sample several of Central Texas' best barbecue spots while mingling with expert pit-masters. The ticket includes plates of mouthwatering meats, sides and desserts plus one complimentary drink ticket. Dishola, the co-host of the event, is a network of self-proclaimed foodies, geeks, travelers and techies.
The Austin Music Awards - The 30th anniversary of the Austin Music Awards will take place on Wednesday March 14, at the Austin Music Hall. In celebrating 30 years of Austin music, the Austin Chronicle will honor the best-of-the-best of the cities musical artists. Performing at the awards are Tex-Mex godfathers Joe King Carrasco & The Crowns with special guests Mariachi Relampago, Jon Dee Graham, and Shawn Sahm. Roots and blues artists Ruthie Foster and Carolyn Wonderland join with Ruthie's Family Band, Rob Hooper, and Cole El Saleh. Nineties neo-psychedelic darlings Sixteen Deluxe play their only show of SXSW 2012.
Crawfish and Cornhole Saturday - Presented by Zagat, Crawfish and Cornhole Saturday is a Cajun-style crawfish boil taking place at Bar 96 (95 Rainey Street) at the SXSW Google Village. Bar 96, known to be one of the more popular bars in the Rainey St. District, is offering hot and spicy mudbugs served al fresco with accompaniments such as corn-on-the-cob and potatoes. There will also be an open bar and outdoor games like Cornhole, giant Jenga and more. The party is free to the public pending an RSVP and five Zagat reviews submitted to the their Web site.
'Faces of Austin' Screening - On Sunday, March 11, at 1:30 p.m., Faces of Austin will screen at SXSW. The short film, presented by the City of Austin, showcases Austin filmmakers and their works that reflect the many diverse faces, voices and experiences that make up the unique identity of the city.
The South Austin Moonlighters - Lastly, take in some music made right in the heart of the city. The South Austin Moonlighters will be performing at Saxon Pub on Saturday, March 17 at 12:45 a.m. The band, which is made up of successful Austin Texas musicians, consists of Aaron Beavers of Shurman, Phil Hurley of Stonehoney, Lonnie Trevino Jr of Deadman, Josh Zee of the Mother Truckers and Phil Bass of Monte Montgomery's Band.