SXSW 2005: Day 2 Wrap-Up: Part 1


Oh my god. I just realized something. I haven’t showered since Tuesday night. So I will give a brief taste of yesterday’s shenanigans to whet your appetites for the MEGAPOST that will come in a little bit, after I wash myself.

I wanted to see Robert Plant’s keynote address yesterday morning, I really did. But waking up in time to get in line for a 10:30 speech just wasn’t happening. My hotel-roommate Marisa reports that he talked about sex a lot, still looks like a golden god, and says he has no desire for a Led Zep reunion. Marisa also spent an hour in line shooting the shit with some woman, only to discover later that it was Pamela Des Barres!

I did make it to a panel, though, called It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold This Panel, which was about race and rock and roll. Dave Marsh moderated, Otis Taylor and Peggy Scott-Adams offered artists’ perspectives, and Kandia Crazy Horse schooled everybody in how the Rolling Stones are racist motherfuckers. Of course, you could never even scratch the surface of such a topic in an hour-long panel, but a lot of important issues were raised. Like why black people who write and perform their own songs are never referred to as “singer-songwriters” unless they’re, like, Tracy Chapman.

Then I trekked out to East Austin to this house in the middle of nowhere called the Church of the Friendly Ghost, for an Arthur magazine party. The whole thing was like a Vice “DO” come to life. Hip dudes in flip-up plastic sunglasses and ironic t-shirts, hip girls with new wave hairdos, everybody pounding back free PBR. I caught the end of Jennifer Gentle‘s set (Italian sprawling psych drones, keyboardist karate-chopping at the keys) and the beginning of Wolfmother‘s (Australian Sabbath-meets-White Stripes rawkness).

I made a brief stop at the Spin cocktail party, which was held at this super fancy Real World/porno set house up in the hills above town. It was kind of creepy. Everybody was with their little clique, not talking to anybody else. James Iha was standing in a corner. (Does that guy even do anything anymore besides go to parties like this?)