Live from SXSW 2008 | I’m Still Alive but My Liver Isn’t

Body Suit Dancers @ SXSW 2008

I fully intended on staying caught-up on the blog and planned on writing from Austin while attending SXSW 2008, but the truth is that I found it incredibly hard to stay on vacation and attend great concerts while also finding time for writing. In the meantime while I haven’t written much, I’ve seen well over 50 bands and some truly incredible shows that I’ll never have the chance to see again. Plus, I got to meet a bunch of bloggers and friends in-person that I hadn’t met yet, and I hung out and met some bands that I would never have the chance to meet either.

I don’t know exactly when it happened, but it was on this trip I realized that I had a true calling to music. I saw a t-shirt proclaiming it and immediately wondered if I should be wearing the phrase myself; it said, “Music in my religion,” to which I immediately felt a huge rush of elation (and relation). It just made sense to me. It finally felt like a message that I could get behind, universally. I’ve had so many moments over the past week where I was truly lost in joy, something that was sorely lacking for my life over the past few months. It was on this trip that I felt the happiness that was My Morning Jacket from the second row, Shout Out Out Out Out’s electro dance-funk, free tacos and Fat Tire at the Hot Freaks party, Rogue Wave’s indie-jam crossover appeal (even though no one knows it yet), anticipation for next year’s festival already, Jason Collett’s alt-country swagger, White Denim’s garage-rock energy (on two separate occasions), Peelander Z’s craziness, and Simian Mobile Disco’s house power and light explosion. I met new friends, I met old friends, I ate mexican food, and I truly experienced transcendence in a way that left me wondering where live music had been all my life.

Oh wait, it’s there been all along…

Please come to this festival with me next year. I’ve already decided that LMB will be having a party (in some form) and I want to try and really bring a great crowd down the fest.

I'm the Editor. HOLLA.
  • Matt P.

    Justin – Great to see that you’ve become “enlightened”. I look forward to future posts and of course, the LMB SXSW party next year. Looks like I’ll have to save up some vacation for Austin.

  • Matt P.

    Justin – Great to see that you’ve become “enlightened”. I look forward to future posts and of course, the LMB SXSW party next year. Looks like I’ll have to save up some vacation for Austin.

  • http://www.hiddentrackblog.com Scott Bernstein

    Nice work Justin. I just finished a music related vacation, and I hear ya on many of the points you raised. It’s gonna be tough going to work tomorrow morning.

  • http://www.hiddentrackblog.com Scott Bernstein

    Nice work Justin. I just finished a music related vacation, and I hear ya on many of the points you raised. It’s gonna be tough going to work tomorrow morning.

  • stems

    Sounds like you had a blast.

    Share more of this Rogue Wave insight.

  • stems

    Sounds like you had a blast.

    Share more of this Rogue Wave insight.

  • http://blog.largeheartedboy.com/ david

    Meeting you was a highlight for me, Justin. I had a similar experience this week, there was an epiphany when the sheer joy of the music broke through, where art shined brightly and music geeks gathered to blather on about their joy (can I get an Amen?).

  • http://blog.largeheartedboy.com/ david

    Meeting you was a highlight for me, Justin. I had a similar experience this week, there was an epiphany when the sheer joy of the music broke through, where art shined brightly and music geeks gathered to blather on about their joy (can I get an Amen?).

  • http://www.livemusicblog.com Justin

    I definitely did have a blast, and indeed — I really don’t want to be heading back to “real life” today.

    An Amen is definitely in order after that festival. Kudos on the parties, David.

    Stems: I will indeed. The writeups will begin today.

  • http://www.livemusicblog.com Justin

    I definitely did have a blast, and indeed — I really don’t want to be heading back to “real life” today.

    An Amen is definitely in order after that festival. Kudos on the parties, David.

    Stems: I will indeed. The writeups will begin today.

  • http://screensnspokes.etsy.com Sam

    Justin, I had a blast of course. Writeups will be coming from me shortly as well, just need to actually get home first, and then compose thoughts.

    I’m impressed you had this realization without having the true “religious” experience at the church. Sorry, had to rub that in.

  • http://screensnspokes.etsy.com Sam

    Justin, I had a blast of course. Writeups will be coming from me shortly as well, just need to actually get home first, and then compose thoughts.

    I’m impressed you had this realization without having the true “religious” experience at the church. Sorry, had to rub that in.