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Tag: Music Festivals (41-50 of 95)

SXSW: The amazing, never-ending Prince show -- a moment-by-moment report

Samsung Galaxy Presents Prince And A Tribe Called Quest At SXSWYou know that old Texas saying, “Keep Austin weird“?

Well, Prince really helped that cause on Saturday night, when he took his massive band to Austin’s La Zona Rosa for the Samsung Galaxy showcase: they wore animal caps, danced with a circus ringleader, and capped off a long week of SXSW mania.

Fans were so excited about the show that they arrived at the venue at 9 p.m. and waited for two full hours before even the openers took the stage. (That would be A Tribe Called Quest, who were excellent.) Then they waited another half hour while Prince set up. At which point they were treated to two and a half hours of crazy fun.

So what happened? Below is a moment-by-moment recap of what must’ve been a thrilling/exhausting night for His Purple Majesty. (The guy is 54 years old. So much energy!) Here’s how it all went down.

12:30 a.m.: A very tall, gorgeous woman, dressed in a pants-free costume that makes her look like a pink circus ringleader, walks out on stage wearing a gold Mardi Gras mask. “It’s Naomi Campbell!” shouts the woman behind me. Sadly, this is not true. “Please welcome Company Play!” announces the Lady Who’s Not Naomi Campbell. And that’s when the animals arrive.

12:31 a.m.: From the very back of the room, a string of musicians marches toward the stage like a New Orleans second line, dancing while they play. The guys in the brass section are all wearing fuzzy plush hats that look like animal heads. I spot a fox, a raccoon, a frog, and a bear before I realize that there are too many to write down. The fierce-looking lady back-up singers, at least two of whom have shaved heads, are shaking tambourines. There are 22 people in Prince’s band. 22! READ FULL STORY

Green Day make triumphant post-rehab return at SXSW

“Welcome back!” Billie Joe Armstrong shouted to a capacity crowd — but he might as well have been talking about himself.

A massively energetic Armstrong led Green Day in a triumphant live performance return at SXSW music festival in Austin on Friday night. The evening marked the first major performance by the band since he had an infamous onstage meltdown during the iHeartRadio festival in Las Vegas last September and subsequently entered rehab. READ FULL STORY

SXSW: Rising rapper Angel Haze gets personal

“Some of you might not know who I am,” admitted Angel Haze on Friday night, as she performed in the Pandora Porch parking lot at SXSW. “But this is a night of f–ing dreams for me.”

Just a few years ago, it would’ve been hard to imagine Haze here. Born in Michigan, the 21-year-old rapper grew up in the Greater Apostolic Faith, which she once compared to living in a cult. Struggling within the church, she found the only way to cure her depression was to write.

“I wrote a freaking suicide letter, and it was kind of amazing to me,” she recently told the Fader. “I had to mature much earlier than everyone else.” When Haze was 16, a pastor threatened her mother, and they broke from the church. The next years were rough. She dropped out of school. She was homeless for a while.

But then Haze started making mixtapes and posting them online, and after a handful of her homegrown tracks earned critical praise, she signed with Universal Republic. Then last fall, a breakthrough moment arrived: Haze recast Eminem’s “Cleaning Out My Closet,” reworking it as a stunningly personal tale of lifelong sexual abuse that started when she was raped at age 10. READ FULL STORY

Engineers check Ultra festival stages after 3 hurt

MIAMI (AP) — Engineers and safety officials are inspecting all stages at the Ultra Music Festival after part of a giant screen fell and injured three workers.
The workers were hoisting up one of several LED screens at the main stage of the electronic dance gathering Thursday night when it fell.
Lt. Ignatius Carroll, a Miami Fire Rescue spokesman, says one person was critically injured. Another was seriously hurt, and a third sustained minor injuries. All were stabilized after being taken to the hospital.
City engineers, fire rescue officials and Occupational Safety and Health Administration representatives are reviewing all the stage setups as a precaution. Carroll says all three agencies must sign off before the festival begins.
The festival is scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. Friday. It is expected to draw 330,000 people.

SXSW: Dave Grohl leads rousing Sound City performance

Coming off his must-read SXSW keynote address earlier that day (he didn’t even change his shirt!), Dave Grohl took to the stage at Stubb’s in Austin to lead his Sound City Players supergroup in an impassioned and largely hard-rocking showcase Thursday night.

The ever-charismatic Foo Fighters frontman declared that this was the group’s final performance together and pledged an “extra long and extra special” night. Sound City is less a band than a showcase for artists who were part of Grohl’s recent documentary (now streaming online) on the famed Sound City recording studio in Van Nuys, where famed artists recorded some of their best-known albums (Nirvana’s Nevermind, Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours and Neil Young’s After the Gold Rush among them).

The Players were never meant to be a permanent thing, of course; they were put together to play a handful of show to support the venture and its soundtrack (Sound City: Reel to Reel), with Grohl serving as ringleader for the shows and heaping praise upon each of his rock idols (who then gamely return the favor — Masters of Reality’s Chris Goss called him a “national treasure”).

The Citi-sponsored three-hour-plus set featured Stevie Nicks, John Fogerty, Rick Springfield and others from the project taking turns at the lead microphone for roughly five songs each (no Paul McCartney, drat). Grohl repeatedly noted how fortunate the crowd to see all these artists together on one stage, and it was tough to argue. READ FULL STORY

SXSW: Macklemore, Tegan and Sara do it for the kids at the MTVU Woodie Awards

GEEK-MACKLEMORE-LEWIS

There were so many decked out college kids at the MTVU Woodie Awards on Thursday, you’d think a ModCloth warehouse exploded somewhere nearby.

There were girls with neon face paint smeared across the bridges of their noses like hippie warpaint. There was a guy with a turtle shell strapped to his front and a stuffed Yoda doll hanging off his back. Someone was holding a giant pinwheel high in the crowd, and someone else was dancing with plastic flowers woven into her hair.

Everyone was getting hopped up on Mountain Dew. And no one had any patience for the slow songs. They wanted high kicks and laser lights and fog machines and, above all, somebody—anybody!—to shout, MAKE SOME NOISE!

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SXSW: Dave Grohl raves about 'Gangnam Style,' slams Pitchfork during festival keynote speech

What’s Dave Grohl up to these days?

Oh, just reviving the classic Sound City studio, making a documentary about it, touring with his supergroup the Sound City Players (who are performing at SXSW later today), and delivering the festival’s keynote speech. Y’know, no big deal.

This afternoon in Austin, Grohl stood before a crowd of rock journalists to talk about what’s inspired him (Edgar Winter, his cousin’s record collection, the punk scene in Washington D.C.), share some stories about Nirvana (like the time Kurt Cobain told everyone that he wanted to be “the biggest band in the world”), and shared a few surprise opinions. (He loves ‘Gangnam Style’! Pitchfork’s record reviews? Not so much.)

The main theme of his speech was this: If you want to be a rock star like him, do everything yourself, from the recording to the releasing to the screenprinting of t-shirts. He even coined a catchphrase of sorts: “The musician comes first.” You can read the highlights of his conversation below. (Be warned, though: the guy really loves to f–ing curse):

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SXSW: Yeah Yeah Yeahs premiere new songs, new look -- VIDEO

What new material did the Yeah Yeah Yeahs play on Wednesday night at SXSW? Well, first, can we talk about what Karen O was wearing?

Strutting out on stage with her freshly platinum’d blonde hair to introduce the first song, “Mosquito,” the title track from their upcoming fourth full-length, she was dressed in a flowered yellow pantsuit with a metallic tank top, a Christmas tree’s worth of red, white, and blue tinsel wrapped around her shoulders, and a hat with YEAH spelled out in big red letters.

There was a whole lot of look in her look, but she had just enough art-star attitude to pull it off. “I’ll suck your blood!” she howled. “Suck your, suck your blood!” And the way the crowd whipped themselves into a frenzy, you’d think they were ready to stick out their necks and let her bite down.

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SXSW: Billy Bragg debuts songs from new album 'Tooth & Nail'

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It’s the first full day of SXSW’s music portion and what better way to kick it off than in the sunny backyard of a small studio just east of the Austin Convention Center, chilling with alt-rock-slash-punk-folk — slash whatever you want to call him — legend Billy Bragg.

Bragg kicked off his SXSW with a short set of songs (one of several planned recording sessions with Daytrotter this week) off his new album, Tooth & Nail, plus an oldie just for fun.

Bragg, who joked that he’d been coming to South by Southwest since it was South by Northeast, warmed up by practicing some scales and then launched into several songs off his new album. READ FULL STORY

Rodriguez, from Oscar-nominated doc 'Searching for Sugar Man,' books Coachella

It just goes to show: When you have an acclaimed feature documentary made about you that goes on to be nominated for an Academy Award, you’re suddenly much more in demand. Rodriguez, the musician at the center of the Oscar-nominated Searching for Sugar Man, has joined the line-ups of three major music festivals: Coachella (in Indio, Calif. this April), Primavera (in Spain this May), and Glastonbury (in the U.K. this June), Billboard reportsREAD FULL STORY

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