May 26 2013 Latest news:
Thursday, March 14, 2013
For most people, if a handful of people turn up to your party it is a relief.
But for the Norwich organisers of an event promoting east of England musicians to the world, their guestlist contains 8,000 names for a venue capable of hosting 300 people.
South by Southwest (SXSW) is up and running in Austin, Texas, for its 26th year and plays host to hundreds of gigs, music industry officials, film representatives and more during its 10-day run.
And the team behind Norwich Sound and Vision (NSV) is hosting its second event at SXSW to promote talent from the region and their city-based music, film and multi-media conference.
They co-hosted their first party last night. Singer-songwriter Mary Epworth leads the eastern artists picked by NSV, which also includes Cave Painting, Syd Arthur and Fear of Men.
Adrian Cooke, NSV festival director, said: “What we do with the artists at SXSW is important but the main thing is we have a big NSV presence.
“We will also be looking for bands to book for October. It’s the right time of the year. You see quite a few bands and there’s a few you see once or twice and you are aware lot of people are talking about them and you think ‘we need to get them’ as they are just at the point where they about to do something interesting.”
NSV returns for its fourth year from October 10 and 12. Early bird discounted tickets for the conference and gigs are on sale.
Miss Epworth said she is playing three shows at SXSW, including the eastern region event, and is also looking forward to meeting other people in the industry.
And with Mary describing herself as a “wildlife nerd”, she says she will take time out after SXSW to indulge in her passion for wildlife, including keeping an eye out for hummingbirds.
She said: “I’ve been to Austin before as a tourist years ago but I’ve always wanted to play.
“I am really chuffed to go. We have an official showcase and two parties, of which one is for the eastern region.
“We are lucky to have three. It’s worth going even if you have one.
“I used to listen to a lot of alt-country, country rock and 60s and 70s psychedelica, and there’s an overlap with country music.
“There’s definitely an influence - my album is half British countryside, half dreaming of the west coast of America. Austin isn’t quite the west coast but it’s a really lovely city.”
Grants from Norfolk County Council, Norwich University of the Arts and Escalator Music have matched the cash put in by NSV for the SXSW event.