The saying goes, “Everything is bigger in Texas”. The hats are bigger, the steaks are thicker, football stadiums are modern day castles, and the music festivals appear monstrous. Right about when the temperatures begin to rise for the spring season, one of the nation’s largest music and arts festivals takes place deep in the heart of Texas.
South By Southwest or SXSW, as it is more affectionately known as, takes place in Austin, TX over the span of ten days, coming to a conclusion on March 18th. Some of the more intriguing performers from the Reggae-Rock community will be present for numerous dates throughout the duration of SXSW. Along the musical acts gracing the stage, the great Bob Marley’s spirit will be ever present as well.
One of the more exciting events during the SXSW Music and Arts Festival undoubtedly will be the United States premiere of the Bob Marley film simply titled, “Marley”. The film’s director was none other than Academy Award Winner Kevin Macdonald (The Last King of Scotland), and he may be on his way to adding to that trophy case in the near future. Even Bob Marley’s children found new tales and discoveries regarding their father’s life. From Bob Marley’s birthplace to his resting place, and the lyrics and music in between, all of the events will soon come to the big screen near you on April 20th. After a previous screening for the film in the summer of 2011, Ziggy Marley was quoted saying, “This is the most personal Bob film any one will ever see. You will cry and smile.”-(Bobmarley.com)
It is difficult follow up after Bob Marley, but if there is any other artist that could possibly do so, it is the legendary Jimmy Cliff. As one of the most powerful vocalists spawning from the island of Jamaica, his nearly 50 years of music excellence has landed his name amongst Rock and Roll icons in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Yet, the accolades have not slowed down Cliff or his writing. With his recent release of “Sacred Fire”, Jimmy Cliff will be featured on three separate evenings at SXSW, while taking hold of the headlining slot on each night.
Another artist that qualifies as a SXSW must see is Natty, hailing from London, UK. Natty has been compared to “Damian Marley meets Neil Young”, and there are plenty of reasons why Atlantic Records added Natty to their deep and talented roster. Saying that Natty’s show is a “can’t miss event” is true. Natty is the lone artist at SXSW to share the stage with multiple Grammy Award Winner, Adele. Coupling with that fact, contrary to Jimmy Cliff’s multiple sets, Natty will have only one performance on March 16th.
Aside from international reggae stars, this “little” southern California punk rock band called Pennywise, will be unleashing their fresh new music with new lead singer Zoli Teglas (formerly of Ignite). Pennywise is promoting their upcoming album “All or Nothing” with two performances during the SXSW festival. If you haven’t had the chance to see Pennywise perform recently, Fletcher Dragge (Guitar and Vocals) has numerously compared Zoli to a younger Jim Lindberg (former Pennywise lead singer). So, if you want a flashback to the 1990s while in Austin, you’ll certainly enjoy a trip to any stage Pennywise hits!
From Country music to Gospel, Jazz to Folk, Hip-Hop to Metal, SXSW is a cultural melting pot of different musical interests, styles, and beliefs. With so many varying musical preferences, it is almost necessary to have genre specific showcases for each category. Thankfully for reggae fans, the Wildfire Reggae and Arts Festival within SXSW is your one-stop-shop for those tasty bass lines and heavy drumbeats.
Performing on March 15th inside the Wildfire festival will be Bumpin’ Uglies (Annapolis, MD) Carlton Pride & Mighty Zion (San Marcos, TX), Micah Brown (Orange County, CA), Fayuca (Phoenix, AZ), Josh Heinrichs & SkillinJah (Springfield, MO) and headliners HR of Bad Brains and Norwood Fisher of Fishbone closing out the festivities. However, that lineup is just one out of three fully loaded days at “The Wildfire”.
There is no question, that any music lover can find their specific desired flavor of music and visual art at SXSW. All you have to do is open your eyes and ears, and enjoy the grand scale of Texas’ finer side.
The Pier Bands at SXSW:
Jimmy Cliff– 3 sets:
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 14 10:00PM -11:00PM @ The Main
THURSDAY, MARCH 15 12:00AM -12:40AM @ Hype Hotel
SATURDAY, MARCH 17 12:30AM – 1:50AM @ The Stage on Sixth Patio
Natty @ VICTORIAN ROOM AT THE DRISKILL
FRIDAY, MARCH 16 10:00PM -10:40PM
Pennywise – new singer
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 14 9:00PM – 9:40PM @ The Main
SATURDAY, MARCH 17 11:30PM -12:40AM @ Club De Ville
ATX Wildfire Reggae & Arts Festival on March 15th – 17th
Featuring Bumpin’ Uglies, Carlton Pride & Mighty Zion, Micah Brown, Fayuca, Josh Heinrichs & SkillinJah and headliners HR of Bad Brains and Norwood of Fishbone closing out the festivities.
WILDFIRE SCHEDULE FOR 3/15:
Noon – 12:45pm DJ Styff
12:45pm – 1:35pm Bachanallian Bliss
1:50pm – 2:40pm Bending Villa
3:00pm – 3:50pm Audic Empire
4:10pm – 5:00pm Bumpin’ Uglies
5:20pm – 6:10pm Carlton Pride & Mighty Zion
6:30pm – 7:20pm Micah Brown
7:40pm – 8:30pm New Reb
8:50pm – 9:40pm Goulash
10:00pm – 11:00pm Fayuca
11:30pm – 12:30am Josh Heinrichs & SkillinJah
1:00am – 2:00am HR of Bad Brains/Norwood of Fishbone
WILDFIRE SCHEDULE FOR 3/16:
12:00pm – 12:50pm Selekta Lou
12:50pm – 1:40pm TBA
2:00pm – 2:50pm Los Loco Locals
3:10pm – 4:00pm Huerta Culture
4:20pm – 5:10pm Root Dimension
5:30pm – 6:20pm Ugly Lion
6:40pm – 7:30pm Axis Unity
7:50pm – 8:50pm Peace Officer
9:20pm – 10:20pm Jahn TI
10:50pm -11:50pm Don Chani
12:30am – 2:00am DUBTONIC KRU
WILDFIRE SCHEDULE FOR 3/17:
12:00pm – 1:50pm DJ Ivor/Junior Vibes
1:10pm – 2:00pm High-Bred Roots
2:20pm – 3:10pm SlaughterHouse Rootz
3:30pm – 4:30pm Footpie
4:50pm – 5:50pm Soulfiya & the Black Lung Crew
6:10pm – 7:10pm Mister Kali
7:30pm – 8:30pm Ashes of Babylon
8:50pm – 9:50pm 77 Jefferson
10:10pm – 11:10pm Common Kings
11:30pm – 2:00am McPullish w/special guests – Weight Crew – Orko Eloheim
Article By: Kris Siuta
“Marley” Movie Trailer…
“Marley” Movie Trailer 2…
Another about Early Tuff Gong Days: