Being that I hosted an international artist this year, I got a free wristband. However, I did not make much use of it, due to physical limitations and weather conditions. Next year should be better - I'm going to work on the physical limitations, and get a better cold weather coat, and knit more, so I will have appropriate attire should it be chilly.
So let's start off with Saturday, the 13th. Frontalot was the only one in town, and he played a party for io9 and Gawker. There were stormtroopers, and Boba Fett, and swordfighting. There was also music, and free drinks, and a very nice smoking area.
We ended up calling it an early night, though we made sure to see Front play and say hi before we left. He was awesome, as always, but I missed the rest of his band sorely. (Especially Blak Lotus, who is mega-adorable and talented.)
Sunday was pretty chill, Jared and I just hung out. By Monday, Les was in town by then, as was Random aka MegaRan (didn't get to hang out much with him, but he was fairly awesome). They did a non-SXSW show at Flamingo Cantina, which was totally awesome - with a couple exceptions (let's hear it for red shirt girl, those of you that were there).
Tuesday is when my week got fucking unbelievable. (And here is where I start gushing like a fangirl.) A little back story - Schaffer the Darklord is my favorite of the nerdcore rappers, and one of my favorite musicians in general, and it has been so since I was introduced to his music. His sound is a bit more "rock" than "hip hop", and he has these snarky, dark, sarcastic lyrics that really appeal to me. Plus he's massively adorable, and I may or may not have a giant crush on him.
Anyway, Les had to rent some equipment, so Jared and Tiffani and I went to keep him company in line while he waited (it was HOURS, they had a terrible system). At one point, I checked my Facebook on my phone, and saw that Schaffer had just posted the following: "Any Austinites and/or SXSW-goers have a recommendation for the best way to travel from the airport to the Austin Convention Center?" To which I replied, "When are you getting in? I'd be willing to come get you." (Shall we say that I am impulsive, and very willing to make this city an awesome experience for my favorite musicians, so that they will be enticed to come back?) To my massive surprise, he took me up on it, and sent me a message with his flight details. That night, we picked up Fresh Kils at the airport, and went to the nerd BBQ, where I forgot to take pictures.
The next morning, I trekked back to the airport to get Schaffer. After some confusion about recognizing each other, we got him loaded into my car, and headed downtown. I showed him where he needed to be, and introduced him to my friends, and went to catch the nerdcore panel that Jesse, Random, and Front were doing. After that, the guys did some shit around the convention center for an hour or so, and we decided we wanted some food. I sent Schaffer and Front text messages in case they wanted to join us, which they both did (though Front had to leave because it was taking too long and he had other shit to do). After food, there was still about an hour and a half until they had to be at the venue, so Jesse, Les, and Kils went back to the convention center to practice. Schaffer decided to hang around with us (cause we're so exciting, right?)
We basically just wandered around downtown for that time, talking, and getting coffee, and such. I also think there was some plotting against the Canadians, Jesse specifically, but it was all in fun. We got Schaffer to the venue, did what we could to help him get set up (and most of us worked the merch table at least on point during the night, though Tiffani and Jared did most of the work). This was the official showcase, so it was kind of a big deal. There was loads of Jesse and Les - there was another guy from their label that couldn't make it, so they split the extra time between them. Then Schaffer went on. (Amazing, amazing show. I didn't even realize until it was over that he didn't play any of my very favorites, I'm cool with that. Probably would have had a nerdgasm on the spot if he had been that awesome and played my favorites. The awesomeness would have been exponential.) He was followed by Random, ytcracker, and k.flay, who were all quite good, but I had to sit down for them due to some knee trouble.
After k.flay, MC Frontalot played, and Schaffer did a song with him, which was wicked cool. I failed at getting pictures during that set - I was busy trying not to get elbowed in the eye by a couple of really drunk girls to my left.
Earlier in the day, I had asked Schaffer where he was staying - he wasn't really sure, so I offered him couch/floor space if he wanted. He didn't take me up on the offer immediately, but, after the show, decided he would stay with us, since I wasn't doing anything the next day and could easily get him to the airport. For the rest of my week, I mostly stayed in, though we did get out Friday for Les and Kils to do some busking.
I dropped Les off at the airport this morning, Kils is going back tomorrow morning, and I think Jesse is moving in with us or something (seriously, he's going home Wednesday or Thursday).
With another awesome SXSW journey under my belt, and the awesomeness of meeting awesome rappers I hadn't met before (and love even more now that I've met them), I'll leave you with one last picture, taken during the song Schaffer did with Front, in which Schaffer is the creepiest looking person ever photographed. (If you actually read this, Mark, know that I have nothing but love for you, but in this picture, you're staring right at me, and your eyes follow me everywhere I go. Come sleep at my place again soon. But don't block my route to the coffee this time.)