SXSW 2013: A handy Minnesota music guide

The Blind Shake will be one of the hardest working bands at SXSW 2013
The Blind Shake will be one of the hardest working bands at SXSW 2013
Photo By Erik Hess

The South By Southwest Music Conference seems perfectly timed each year with the exact moment when bands and music fans from the North have reached their collective breaking points with the interminable winter months, and communally head down to Austin, Texas in a grand, musical migration.

Despite some compelling, contrary arguments against what SXSW has become, this year should still offer a ton of music with local ties. And for those lucky folks who are heading down to the warmer climes of Texas for the musical chaos that is SXSW, here is a comprehensive list of the Minnesota bands, musicians, and locally assembled showcases --
Update: And now that reportedly includes Prince -- that you can check out while you are down there.
See Also:
Dessa, Field Report, Solid Gold headline First Avenue's SXSW 2013 day party
Slideshow: Minnesota Music at SXSW 2012

SXSW 2013: A handy Minnesota music guide

We've already detailed our involvement with First Avenue's SXSW showcase, featuring Dessa, Solid Gold, the 4onthefloor an others, as well as a talented mix of Wisconsin bands led by Field Report and PHOX. That show is set for Friday, March 15th, at Holy Mountain.

SXSW 2013: A handy Minnesota music guide

Another big local SXSW showcase on that Friday afternoon is the MN Nice day party at the Liberty Bar presented by Smith. The bill features Knifight (featuring McNally Smith alumni Nick Garrison), BNLX, Wiping Out Thousands, Haley Bonar, the Chalice, Elyse Barnard, Henri Bardot, Yesha Townsend, and the Are You Local? best new band winners, Carroll, with special guest host for the festivities, Savannah Smith.

Twin Cities-based Funk-It Records are also teaming up with the revered Duluth label, Chaperone Records and Boutique Farm to present what they are humbly calling the Mother Of All SXSW Showcases on Friday, March 14, at the East Avenue Lounge. The free, all-day affair features a slew of great Minnesota acts, including BNLX, Charlie Parr, Actual Wolf, Father You See Queen, Wiping Out Thousands, Color Pharmacy, Southwire, Hunting Club, and many others. Head to the event's Facebook page for the full line-up and set times.

Minneapolis's Copycats Media are teaming up with Tinderbox Music to throw an intriguing free day party at SXSW. On Saturday, March 16 at the Blind Pig, Dessa will be headlining their event, along with Sean Anonymous, live painting by local artist Chuck U, as well as an unannounced special guest. Check out the event's Facebook page for more info.

On Friday, March 14, the Jayhawks' Gary Louris will be headlining a night of music at TenOak Lounge with strong Minnesota ties, as both the Melismatics and Kevin Bowe and the Okemah Prophets will play earlier in the evening.

In addition to playing First Avenue's Showcase, Solid Gold have another high profile gig planned on Thursday, March 13, as they will join local noise alchemists Marijuana Deathsquads at the Paradigm sponsored showcase at the Mohawk, with Solid Gold on the Outdoor Stage amongst indie darlings Cold War Kids and Local Natives, while MDS will be headlining the Indoor Stage that night after Cheetahs and Supreme Cuts. Solid Gold are also set to play the Filter Party at Lustre Pearl on Wednesday afternoon, the My Old Kentucky Blog Showcase at Peckerheads on Friday night, and a Saturday afternoon set for the 508 House Party at the C3 Outdoor Stage. 

Picked To Click duo Strange Names have a couple official shows planned for SXSW, taking part in the White Iris Records showcase at Parkside on March 12, while also playing a showcase at Friends on Wednesday, March 13.

Mayda is also going to be quite busy at SXSW, with a string of shows over four nights. Here's her schedule in Austin:

Mar. 13 at Shangri-La 2:15pm and Hilltop Bar & Grill 8pm (Austin, TX)
Mar. 14 at Dizzy Rooster (Austin, TX)
Mar. 15 at Amped (Austin, TX)
Mar. 16 at Chuggin Monkey (Austin, TX)

The 4onthefloor are also playing quite a few gigs at SXSW, with the hardworking band scheduling these series of shows in addition to the First Ave showcase:

Texas Jumpstart 6 Showcase
March 14, The Sidebar

Jambase Showcase
March 15, the Tap Room at Six


The Blind Shake just might be the hardest working Minneapolis band down at SXSW, with plenty of shows scheduled between March 11-17, including the Peelander-Fest on the 16th. Check the Blind Shake's website for specific times/locations.

Monday March 11 - Bruise Cruise on Ladybird Lake

Tuesday March 12 - Panache SXSW Kick-Off Party at Tillery Park, 801 Tillery St.

Wednesday March 13 - Burger City/Oops Baby Presents at Hotel Vegas/Volstead

Thursday March 14 - Can't Stop the Bleeding Day Party at Beerland

Friday March 15 - Monofonous Press Showcase at Trailer Space

Friday, March 15 - Altamont Presents at Sailor Jerry House

Friday, March 15 - Panache Booking Official Showcase at Hotel Vegas/Volstead

Saturday March 16 - Peelander-fest at The Grackle

Saturday, March 16 - Rubberneck Magazine Presents at Barbarella

Sunday March 17 - Panache Hangover Party at Beerland

The Ocean Blue are playing at Buffalo Billiards on Saturday, March 16, while Haley Bonar, in addition to performing at the MN Nice showcase, will be playing the Family Music Meltdown showcase on March 15, and on March 16 she will be playing at the Doritos Bold Stage (with Lucy Michelle & the Velvet Lapelles), as well an official showcase at the Taproom On Six later that night.

Sleep Study are playing a couple of showcases for Study Breaks Magazine on March 14 & 15, both of them at the Nook Amphitheater, while Cory Chisel and the Wandering Sons find themselves on a terrific bill at the Mohawk on Friday, March 15 along with Dawes and Chelsea Light Moving. Off With Their Heads are headlining Scoot Inn on March 16, while On And On are playing a great bill at Red Eyed Fly on March 13 with Faye and the Wild Feathers.

Actual Wolf, after playing the Boutique Farms Showcase, will be at Opal Divine's on March 14, while BNLX, in addition to the Mother of All Showcase and MN Nice, will also play on Saturday, March 16 at Nick Tangborn's Secret Handshake Party at the Hole In The Wall.

Local booking/promoting specialists, Hydrive Shows, have a big Drive The Noize Showcase planned on March 14 at the Karma Lounge, featuring the local hip-hop crew the Chalice along with Willy Joy, Chance the Rapper, and others.

In addition to putting on their big MN Nice showcase, McNally Smith have a lengthy educational trip planned where they will be visiting schools to talk about the choices that go in to making a life in music. The confirmed schools and dates are listed below, and you can follow along here for all of their upcoming musical education adventures and exploits.

March 8 - Main Street School of the Performing Arts (Hopkins, Minnesota)
March 11 - Valley High School (West Des Moines, Iowa)
March 12 - Central Visual & Performing Arts High School (St. Louis, Missouri)
March 13 - Paseo Academy of Fine and Performing Arts (Kansas City, Missouri)
March 14 - Jenks High School (Jenks, OK)
March 15 - MN Nice Showcase at SXSW (Austin, Texas)
March 18 - High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (Houston, Texas)
March 19 - Booker T Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (Dallas, Texas)
March 20 - Overton High School for the Creative and Performing Arts (Memphis, Texas)

And finally, for those of us who can't make it down to Austin for SXSW, the Current is presenting the first multi-station public radio broadcast and webcast from the SXSW Radio Day Stage on March 15. Beginning at noon that day, listen and watch along live with the Current (and four other public radio stations) as they broadcast sets from Divine Fits, Emmylou Harris & Rodney Crowell, Iron & Wine, Charles Bradley, Pickwick, Dawes, and Vampire Weekend. You won't have the heat and chaos of Austin, but at least you'll have the music. 

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