Top 20 Things We Need to See at SXSW Next Week
Next week the Rocks Off Action Team goes to Austin for Ess Ex Ess Dubya and another four days of fun, sun, eavesdropping and live music. And swag, of the free kind, not the kind that Justin Bieber is still trying to make happen.
No, he didn't get that record contract, or the licensing deal.
This year at SXSW, we're looking forward to many, many things, including the Sound City Players, Nick Cave and the Texas return of pioneering ska act The Specials, and, of course, we're also excited to see how our locals fare against the best (?) that the music-industry goons have to offer.
Obviously, dozens of Houston's own will be there hawking their musical wares. Keep an eye out for an extensive listing soon here on Rocks Off of when and where you can see Houston bands in and around SXSW.
Also, we sincerely hope that Depeche Mode or David Bowie do not decide to throw surprise concerts. Not because we hate them, but because we don't want to anger you folks back in Houston.
Jack Black and Kyle Gass of Tenacious D are coming to Austin to premiere Ghost Ghirls, a 12-part Web series about two really bad female ghost hunters, played by Amanda Lund and Maria Blasucci. They aren't bad because they are girls, they just have no idea what they're doing.
Molly Shannon, Val Kilmer, Black and Jason Schwartzman are also a part of the series, which is produced by Black's Electric Dynamite production company. The D will be playing a concert at the watch party on Wednesday night at the Yahoo! venue.
Dave Grohl's Sound City Players
As announced just this past Monday afternoon, Dave Grohl and his Sound City Players will be playing Thursday, March 14, at Stubb's. The band features Grohl himself and (deep breath) Stevie Nicks, John Fogerty, Rick Springfield, Lee Ving of Fear, Rick Nielsen, Brad Wilk of Rage Against the Machine, Corey Taylor of Slipknot, Chris Goss and Alain Johannes. The Meat Puppets are the cherry on top as opening act.
Grohl is also the keynote speaker at SXSW, earlier that afternoon. As Bruce Springsteen was the veritable boss of SXSW 2012, Grohl is set to rule this one in his own way.
With lead singer Billie Joe Armstrong now out of rehab and telling all to Rolling Stone's David Fricke this week, Green Day is set to make its SXSW debut on Friday, March 15, at ACL Live.
That same night they will also be premiering Broadway Idiot, about their American Idiot disc's Broadway incarnation, and the studio documentary ¡Cuatro!, which follows the band's recent 37-song three-album turn.
It's good to hear that Armstrong is apparently clean and clearheaded now, and I am actually curious to see what is next for Green Day, even though I wasn't too terribly high on ¡Uno!, ¡Dos! or even ¡Tré!. But then again, not many were.
In the RS profile, Armstrong says that at the height of his pill addiction, his backpack "sounded like a giant baby rattle," and that he had been trying to go largely sober since 1997 and the Nimrod album. According to Armstrong, it was also at a gig in Austin where he began drinking to get the courage to hit larger stages. Here's hoping he sticks to root beer this time around.
Keep in mind that next year Green Day's Dookie turns 20 years old, so an anniversary tour could also be in the cards, as Armstrong hinted.