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 V.15 No.11 | March 16 - 22, 2006 

Spotlight

Our Music Showcase is Better Than Yours!

The Second Annual New Mexico Music Showcase at SXSW

Representing the 505: Burque band members at last Friday’s SXSW Send-Off Party at Atomic Cantina
Wes Naman
Representing the 505: Burque band members at last Friday’s SXSW Send-Off Party at Atomic Cantina

Texas and New Mexico have what one could call a sibling rivalry. We New Mexicans give our Texan friends a hard time for being from the Lone Star state, and they jest back by asking us how we learned to speak English so well. Well, big-bro Texas, we really do love ya and that's why we're coming over to crash your party.

Unless you've been hiding in a hole, you know that Austin's bursting at the seams with music industry mayhem this week. The South by Southwest Music Festival and Conference kicked off Wednesday, March 15, and runs through Sunday, March 19. In it's 20th year, SXSW has established itself as the place to hear new music from up-and-coming stars. Four New Mexico-based record labels and the New Mexico Tourism Department know this, and they're going to take advantage of Austin while it's at its most vulnerable.

Teaming-up for a kill-two-birds-with-one-stone event, Little Kiss Records, Socyermom Records, Detach Records and Frogville Records approached the Tourism Department with a proposal to host a New Mexico music showcase in Austin during the SXSW festival. Being that Austin is one of the top producers of tourists to New Mexico, the Tourism Department jumped on board, rented a performance space and started promoting the event with flyers, e-mails and magazine ads.

While the NMTD is using this as a chance to “sell” New Mexico, the record companies are using it to put some of their artists on the national map. Little Kiss Recond's partner James de Champlon said this year's lineup is “like a bullseye on a dartboard. These are the bands that make sense for South by Southwest. Next year, if we take down everybody and their cousin, like I'm hoping to do, it'll be more like a grenade,” de Champlon sasy, adding “But it's not only about representing music that is appropriate for South by Southwest, it's about representing New Mexico culture.”

Playing the official New Mexico showcase, which is not a sanctioned SXSW event, are The MindySet, of god and science, Hundred Year Flood, Joe West, The Dirty Novels, Unit 7 Drain, Foma and The Darlington Horns.

Another little known SXSW fact that organizers of this New Mexico showcase hope to capitalize on is the massive over-sale of wristbands for official shows. Music fans looking for concerts fill non-sanctioned showcases all over the city. Even better, the non-sanctioned events also draw music lovers not willing to pay for admission to the festival—as well as the rumored major-label reps looking to find that new, original sound that could be the next big thing.

The Second Annual New Mexico Music Showcase will be held in Austin, Texas, on Wednesday, March 15, at the Las Manitas Avenue Café at 211 Congress from 6 to 10 p.m. The New Mexico Music Showcase 2 will be held Thursday, March 16, at Shoal Creek Saloon at 909 N. Lamar from 5 p.m. to midnight. Both shows are free. For more information, visit www.newmexico.org/sxsw.

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