Brooklyn Vegan hosted an excellent three-day SXSW showcase at Cheer Up Charlies in Austin, Texas, and Gretsch was grateful to partner with the indie music blog to host the artist lounge area.
The venue provided an indoor and outdoor stage of non-stop music from noon until six to keep concert goers energized with plenty of options to suit all tastes.
Festivities kicked off into high gear on the outdoor stage on Thursday with White Reaper, a garage punk band from Louisville, Ky. Their set was followed up by another punk act, Plague Vendor, who gripped their audience with a very theatrical performance from singer Brandon Blaine. The punk momentum continued with Mean Jeans followed by Radioactivity, who both offered up a lighter pop-punk, Ramones-like vibe. Pop band Turnover and rock band Citizen, who share the same label, brought an interesting twist before handing it over to hardcore act Power Trip, who ended the day with an explosive show that engaged a riotous audience in moshing and crowd surfing.
Meanwhile, the indoor stage showcased an eclectic set of musicians that ranged from pop to folk to country to well, hard to classify. Kansas-based pop band Your Friend began the event, playing tracks from debut album Domino followed by Julia Jacklin, a folk rock newcomer from Australia, who was joined by a three-piece ensemble. After Jacklin, came Canadian country singer Danial Romano, who has been challenging genre boundaries lately. As the day progressed, the bands became more varied and included, Little Scream, Ezra Furman, PWR BTTM, Spookyland, and finally, Sorority Noise.
Friday’s party started off strong with two groups from Israel, Vaadat Charigim and Ninet Tayeb. We couldn’t help but notice Tayeb’s very talented and spirited guitarist, who stole the show with his excellent skills on a bright orange Gretsch Chet Atkins model. Other notable performances include feminist punk quartet Tacocat, Pennsylvania duo Slingshot Dakota, American rock band Pinegrove, and singer/songwriters Margaret Glaspy and Kevin Morby.
Already getting buzz, Seattle’s Car Seat Headrest gained even more traction with eight concerts during the SXSW festival. They began their sixth performance by opening Saturday’s party, and we were happy to loan lead singer Will Toledo a Gretsch G65439 Pro Silver Jet we had onsite. The excellent set included songs, “Ending of Dramamine,” “Vincent,” “Drunk Drivers,” “Unforgiving Girl”and “Stop Smoking.”
Saturday’s outdoor stage included sets by Diet Cig of New York, Alex Luciano, Pure Bathing Culture, Fear of Men, Le1f, Julien Baker, Into It. Over It. and Protomartyr.
Inside acts included Lucy Dacus, Girls Names, Guerilla Toss, Big Thief, Gwenno, Japanese Breakfast, Margo Price, and Mothers. Price, a country artist from Nashville signed to Jack White’s Third Man Records label drew a heck of a crowd, including comedian Bill Murray who came to the venue just to check out her set.
During the event, Gretsch set up a special selection of guitars in the artist tent. It was the perfect retreat for the talent to sit back, relax, plug-in, and talk tech. Not only did we host the Brooklyn Vegan lineup, but we were also treated to surprise pop-ins from many artists including The Big Pink, Everything, Everything and Bob Moses.
Canadian country artist Corb Lund also dropped in with his Gretsch Setzer Hot Rod, which he’s made some interesting mods to. We’ll bring you that interview in the coming weeks.
Gretsch was honored to participate in a monumental affair with Brooklyn Vegan to support live music. Be on the lookout for the lucky grand prize winner of the Gretsch Streamliner guitar we offered up to those who RSVP’d to the Brooklyn Vegan parties.