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Thursday, June 20, 2024

Excitement for South By Southwest mounts

South By Southwest officially begins this weekend down in Austin, Texas. With a stacked lineup of artists, keynote speakers, films and television shows, SXSW is gearing up to be an amazing festival. The Daily Cardinal Arts staff will be flying down to cover the event, and here’s what they are most looking forward to:

As a hub for all things music, SXSW has a lot to offer this year. First off is the 18-year-old Madison native, Trapo. He’s one of the most original artists in hip hop right now, giving him the potential to blow up at any time. Additionally, young rappers like Aminé, Eric Biddines and Sammus all have extremely unique sounds delivered with intense confidence, following a recipe for success.

Acid Dad, the psychedelic, surf rock group with a knack for making infectious music, has been in constant rotation since I found them. Temples is another band with a psychedelic edge, but they take their sound to futuristic places that draw in your attention like no other. The Regrettes are a punk band from LA who are overflowing with energy; they are primed for a rowdy show.

Of course, I’d be crazy if I didn’t say how giddy I am about the appearances of established acts like Wu-Tang Clan, A$AP Ferg, Sleigh Bells and Migos.

Most of all, I’m looking forward to stumbling across artists that I’ve never heard of before.

- Logan Rude, Music Columnist

Although recently revoked, the controversy surrounding SXSW and their inexcusable deportation clause in their artist statement has launched a justifiable air of cynicism surrounding the festival amongst artists and industry professionals alike. While we should all go into Austin wary of the corporate backbone that supports this event, I’m finding optimism in the incredible and deserving artists waiting to be supported and unearthed during their performances in the Lone Star State. While my favorite approach to South By is spontaneous and flexible, I’ve got a mile-long list of must-sees going in. There’s too many to cram into one blurb, but I included some highlights. Girlpool’s recent single “123” has me itching to hear my old favorites while I hope for more of a look at their upcoming album. I’ve been listening to Young M.A. nonstop since her feature in “The Fader.” I’ll be lined up for YouTube’s showcase with Solange, Lil Yatchy and Migos because, c’mon! After catching Noname at The Sett about a month ago, I’m dying for another live performance from the phenomenal rapper. I could keep going; my intended schedule is impossibly packed and bound to shift once I get there, but the one thing that’s set in stone is that a lot my favorite performances will be people whose names I don’t even know at the moment.

- Amileah Sutliff, Arts Staff Writer

South by Southwest is going to be quite the experience this year! Hundreds of exciting events are lined up, and I wish to cover just about all of them. Although I cannot clone myself and attend every event, there are a few specific standouts that I hope to catch. The new television series, “American Gods,” a Starz series based on the Neil Gaiman novel, will be premiering with the cast in attendance. Former Vice President and recent meme-celebrity Joe Biden was just announced as a special guest. The cast of my favorite political comedy, HBO’s “Veep” will be there, including the legendary Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Chaos will no doubt ensue when the “Game of Thrones” creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, as well as the show’s stars Maisie Williams and Sophie Turner, will give a talk. UW alum and “Transparent” creator Jill Soloway will be giving a film keynote. There will also be exciting music performances by local talents, including Caroline Smith, Lizzo and Hippo Campus, as well as better-known artists like Spoon, Weezer and Solange. Kesha will not be performing, but she will be giving a talk discussing the dangers of cyberbullying. Many interesting films will be making their debut as well, including the closer of the festival, space thriller “Life,” starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Ryan Reynolds. So much to cover, so little time!

- Ben Golden, Arts Editor

I had the privilege of attending South By Southwest last year, so I cannot wait to jump back into the thick of the festival again. On my radar this year is director Edgar Wright’s crime-comedy “Baby Driver,” starring Ansel Elgort, Kevin Spacey and Jamie Foxx. James Franco’s “The Disaster Artist,” starring James and Dave Franco, Seth Rogen and Josh Hutcherson will also add comedy to the lineup. Franco will appear again in “This is Your Death,” a dramatic satire directed by Giancarlo Esposito, who also stars in the film. On the side of television, “American Gods,” an adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s fantastical novel, will premiere at SXSW, along with “Dear White People,” a show based on the 2014 film.

Several notable speakers will also give presentations; director Gareth Edwards, hot off the successes of “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” will be in attendance, as well as showrunners D.B. Weiss and David Beinoff of “Game of Thrones,” accompanied by stars Maisie Williams and Sophie Turner. Most notably, however, is former Vice President Joe Biden, who will discuss the fight to end cancer.

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I’m counting down the seconds until I finally get to experience SXSW 2017.

- Sam Marz, Arts Editor

Check out the arts section at for updates on South By Southwest 2017.

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