Looking at the skies upon waking this morning, it’s easy to see that high pressure and cloudless skies will be the order of business here in ATX for the next few days. It reached the low 80s and what better way to experience an Austin baptism than a trip to Barton Springs Pool (www.ci.austin.tx.us/parks/bartonsprings.htm). It is the oasis of this city and no visit is complete for anyone without a dip into this gorgeous, spring-fed pool where the temp is supposedly a steady-eddy 65 degrees. Anyway, that was goal #1 today and it was met about noon.
Running the streets in the morning, it was not hard to sense the music buzz beginning to build. Posters are everywhere as a folks speaking in foreign dialects (SXSW has many, many attendees from overseas.) Things kick off officially tomorrow night, but parties galore begin at noon-ish with bands playing everything from clubs and outdoor venues to parking lots and backyard. It’s a freakin’ free for all.
Anyway, goal #2 today was to see the world premier of of the documentary film The Promised Land (www.room609.com). The goal was met, though, I did catch a film before it featuring a number of Texas made shorts that was okay, but not nearly as good as the other two shorts programs. Onto The Promised Land about the musicians who comprise the Louisiana swamp pop all-star band Little Band o’ Gold. First off, they had to hold about 20 seats just for the filmmakers and musician. The brainchild of a few English fellows in conjunction with Cajun rocker C.C. Adcock who is a member of the band, it dives deep into the various personalities of the fellows making up Little Band “O Gold. The film is excellent. Most interesting is that many of these fellows - swamp pop legends Warren Storm & Tommy McLain, Adcock, Steve Riley, Dickie Landry, David Egan, etc - have or are presently band leaders. To bring them together into a group where they all seem to be having the time of their life and not letting egos get in the way at all is amazing. They also carry the swamp pop torch in admirable fashion. If you have any interest in the Southern Louisiana music scene, it is a must see film. Hopefully, it will find it’s way to R.I. sometime soon.
That’s it for films - 12 in 5 days. Onto music with tonight’s annual Swollen Circus festivities put together by Walter Salas-Humara and friends the kickoff for these ears.