In general the festival was a shitshow, such a grind, more work than passion. The more successful American bands sit smug on their rotting thrones while we just keep our noses to the grindstone and do what we do.
BRAD FERGUSON (harder to pick up, but self deprecating in the extreme)
[DAY2] Reactions were good from the few people who showed up for our set — mostly other bands who would play later in the day… [DAY4] The stage was set up in the parking lot, and there were only a couple of people there, but the band played well and we had a nice mid-afternoon lunch…
Still, Josh from Pangbianr has subsequently said that there were some good potential opportunities that might come out of it for the Chinese bands, but it definitely rings true with most of the things we’ve read about this year’s Sx. Overbranded, overdone and overpriced.
If you have access to Youtube, here is a video of one of DFG’s showcases. Enjoy:
After a couple of reasonably low key incursions in 2010 and 2011, China is going balls to the wall for SxSW 2012. Re-TROS, Carsick Cars, Snapline, Rustic, Duck Fight Goose, Deadly Cradle Death and Soviet Pop are repping from a musical perspective, while newly launched Chinese Music Video platform Caoker are hosting a party. Finally, some of the great and good of China’s music scene are paneling it up: they will cover the fantastical topic of “Why the Global Music Industry Needs China”
Pangbianr has a great synopsis of everything. Find it HERE.
Great news for one of Shanghai’s most hardworking and talented bands. Duck Fight Goose have been invited to represent China at SxSW 2012. Of course, the deal is the usual one – you cover flights and related costs, we give you a small stipend per show. Still, great opportunity to kick things off in the US for DFG. Go represent Shanghai boys and girls………
Last month, our sister site Wooozy (purveyor of all that is interesting and indie in music in Chinese) conducted and subsequently published this interview with Josh Feola of Beijing based blog Pangbianr (which is also a purveyor of all that is interesting and indie in music in both Chinese and English). They kindly allowed us to reprint – here is part 1.
SXSW last month, you were on the SXSW tour with Carsick Cars as tour manager. Have you been to such big festivals before?
Just to clarify, I wasn’t exactly Carsick Cars’s tour manager. Their trip was sponsored by Converse and they were also supported by their label, Maybe Mars. Since I’m from Texas and I “grew up” in the independent music scene in San Antonio and Austin, I know a lot of people who organize more underground, independent shows during South by Southwest. I also knew Carsick Cars from living in Beijing and running pangbianr. So it was a good opportunity to help out the band by booking some more local shows for them during their trip to Austin. In general I don’t really like big music festivals, but South by Southwest is different. It’s like a music festival spread out across dozens of venues every day for almost a full week. I went to SXSW a few times while in high school but mostly just to see my friends’ bands and more off-the-radar shows at houses and small bars that the majority of fest-goers wouldn’t ever hear of.
This time, a Canadian publication blowing smoke up Beijing. Again, at risk of overdoing what is happening in China’s musical underground, the article centers around the Maybe Mars China Invasion that we have covered HERE and HERE.
The article once again politicizes the music and the artists, but generally covers the current indie scene quite well. You can read the full article HERE and make sure you read the hilarious and spammy comments…
UPDATE: a great little review of the actual showcase (which we missed) at our friends Layabozi HERE.
As reported HERE, Beijing based label Maybe Mars have been in Austin for the last week at the biggest festival for emerging artists, SXSW. Label stars PK14, Carsick Cars and AV Okubo played a bunch of day shows which culminated in a showcase at the Speakeasy on Saturday night, which attracted in excess of 300 people. We caught tour manager, publicist and label jack-of-all-trades Nevin Domer very briefly after the Houston show last night (which was unfortunately less well attended at around 30 pax). We will try and precis our scattered conversation and give you an insight to the tour so far:
From tomorrow, this here Radar is gonna be on planes, trains and automobiles for 10 days. We are hugely honored to be speaking at SXSW (you can find the event details HERE – the topic is “Can China build a better music business?” and it will be at the Austin Convention Centre at 2pm on Saturday, March 20th). This panel is not to be confused with the “How to access the China music market” by a guy that is basically offering to submit your album to the Ministry of Culture for US$600. Tip: find a friendly Chinese intern to do it for much, much less…
Anyway, there is a LOT of stuff from the last 12 months that we haven’t gotten around to posting, so if we have time, we will go back over some of the things that missed the cut.
Yes, we like our multiplication signs here at the Radar. We also like to follow the fortunes of Beijing label Maybe Mars and sneaker brand Converse.
So, we were excited to learn that Converse are taking their relationship with Chinese indie music out of China, by supporting the bands PK14, CarsickCars and AV Okubo on their tour to SXSW and the surroundings this month. Dates still aren’t confirmed, and Youku might be covering it. It’s going to be interesting to see how the US receives Maybe Mars for the second time. We wish them luck!