HEY Y'ALL! I'll be down in Austin for SXSW this week. Super pumped to be here for the 4th time (!) I'll be spinning at the Fashion Brain Bar on Monday March 16th at the W Hotel as well as a private set later that night from 1-2AM at a secret location. i'll also be hanging out the rest of the week enjoying the music, tech conversations and tacos, of course.
The Fashion Brain Bar is put on by my good friend, colleague and former business partner Elizabeth Canon. Elizabeth is pretty much the queen of technology in the fashion world and also knows a thing or two about having a good time. If you're in the fashion/tech world or want to hear me spin, drop me a note and I'll see if we can get you on the list.
So, I'll go ahead and say it: I love SXSW and I love Austin. What's not to love right?In my previous career in digital marketing/startups of course the trip to the massive tech, music and film festival was essential. A lot of people definitely have a love/hate relationship with South by, mostly because if you're not here, you're guaranteed to be hit over the head by how much fun folks are having via Twitter. Careful, those hashtags will kill ya. On top of that, I do hear people's points about how the festival has gotten taken over by brands and too much in-your-face marketing. The first year I attended (2009), there were some major sponsors of the festival and a few great street marketing stunts (free grilled cheese anyone?), but back then it felt much more organic. Foursquare came onto the map as a prominent startup that year, and Twitter the year before, largely because of word-of-mouth, not incessant advertising.
Now, you actually can't go more than 1 minute without seeing or hearing some sort of brand message. That said, the whole festival, and all the free music, food, and amazing energy from everyone congregating in such a special place, wouldn't be possible without these brand sponsorships. It's also hard to complain about the awesome parties from Fast Company, Hype Machine and Mashable, or the free lifts from Uber. It's part of the deal, so deal with it.
personally, I've made a lot of fond memories here, met more than a few fantastic people and have sparked countless ideas over tacos and beer. I'm looking forward to doing more of the same this round. Give me a shout on twitter if you'll be down there, and if not, you can count on me blowing up your feed ;)