March 9, 2007

March 2007 Editor Letter

March 2007 Letter From The Editor


In the 27 months I’ve been the Managing Editor of INsite Magazine, I have never taken the Letter From The Editor spot to step on my soapbox. I always thought that was entirely self-serving and petty. So, please know that as you read on.

I have been one of SXSW’s biggest cheerleaders in the last few years. If there was someone saying something negative about the event, I always replied with something like “as soon as people stop lining up around the block to purchase a wristband, maybe they’ll consider a change” or “If I was running a festival that was THAT big I’d do the same thing.” I’m done being a supporter. Simply because, it seems to me they have forgotten where they came from.

After doing my best to showcase the best coming to town for the last two years, this year INsite has decided to largely ignore the event. Seems after all of the hard work and dedication we’ve put into promoting this event, we were treated like we weren’t allowed at the same water fountain. So, let the other magazines suck that teat. No offense.

In reality, this festival is working on borrowed time. Just like MySpace, YouTube and iTunes are hurting the music sales industry, technological advances like and Culture Catch (which you can read about in this month’s issue) will make this label and publicist frat party an antique soon enough.

People can now see the next big thing from their home. They don’t have to wait until the band comes to their town… and definitely they won’t have to spend a lot of money in Austin, Texas to see a bunch of bands who are spending a lot of money in order to spend 30 minutes to an hour playing in front of a studio rep and 5 people who’d rather be somewhere else.

Now, as a music fan, I do recommend you go out and do all you can to have a good time. It doesn’t have to cost you much at all. There are plenty of free events. The 8th Annual Heart of Texas Quadruple Bypass Festival at Wave, Spill, Treasure Island and Fuel (, 7th Annual Invasion of the GoGirls at Trophy’s (, 4th Annual Austin Indie Alliance March Music Madness at Dizzy Rooster ( are just three. Pop into any search engine and you’ll likely find more. Hell, just head to the party sans the bracelet and the only things you’re going to miss are the lines. Heck, even the showcase at Nuno’s Upstairs is only $3.

Louis Black said in the interview we decided not to run in this issue (it’s on our MySpace and FlapDaddy as an INsite Extra – myspace/insiteaustin,
“If you go to Park City the week after Sundance [Film Festival], it’s just a ski resort. You go the weeks before Sundance it’s just a ski resort. Being in Toronto at the Toronto Film Festival, it’s a great community and a great film community – but it’s not the same great community it is during the film festival. You come to Austin any week of the year, any day of the year, a lot of what makes SXSW work is going on just on a small proportion.”

That’s the thing. Austin is awesome the other 51 weeks out of the year. It’s not a city you should come in, transform into a blood-letting socialite scene for a week and leave and think that it will be the same. You’ve become the elephant in the room nobody wants to acknowledge. You became the problem and not the solution.

I applaud the bands who are playing this year. We included some mentions of bands playing in town during the third week… including some playing the “big one.” I included them to be fair to the artists and local club owners who are participating. At the end of the day it’s all about promoting good music and musicians who deserve to be heard in Austin. You just can’t put a price tag on that.

I know I haven’t. Thanks for reading.

Next month I’ll actually write a letter from the editor. Big things are happening in April… INsite will be putting out a Compilation CD at a live show at Stubb’s on April 21. Details next month.

As the Biscuit Brothers say... "Go Make Music."
- Sean

p.s. The New Music TipSheet has released their "Free List" of shows during that 3rd week in March.

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