SXSW 2013

Posted by    |    March 15th, 2013 at 2:40 pm

Courtesy of Google Images

Courtesy of Google Images

Every year in March, creative minds gather in Austin, Texas to share their ideas and inspire future filmmakers and creators.  The SXSW Film Conference and Festival gives thinkers and innovators the opportunity to present their ideas to the entertainment and media culture, and pave the way for the future of film and entertainment. I attended the festival over the weekend on behalf of YouPlusDallas and covered the film portion of SXSW to present you with a description of the major events.

Courtesy of Google Images

Courtesy of Google Images

On Friday, March 8th, I attended the premiere of The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, featuring Steve Carell, Steve Buscemi, Olivia Wilde, Jim Carrey, James Gandolfini, and Alan Arkin.  This film sets Carell and Buscemi as aging Las Vegas magicians, Burt Wonderstone and Anton Marvelton, respectively, who soon have to dig deep for a better act once Carrey’s character (Steve Gray) begins to steal the spotlight as a fresh street magician.  From a critics standpoint, this film is very unimpressive, being described by some as “instantly forgettable” and “yawn-inspiring”, while others describe it as “periodically chuckle-worthy” and “just amusing enough to pass the time”.  Only time will tell if this film becomes a hit, but I’m not counting on it.  Some of the cast was also in attendance for this film. (more…)

If you can’t make it to SXSW, South By So What!? is here to help

Posted by    |    March 14th, 2013 at 4:54 pm

South+by+So+What+2013+860507_425041704247850_6954363So you didn’t make it to SXSW this year and you’re super bummed about it. You don’t get to run around from venue to venue checking out cool bands, stopping only to chow down on some food truck goodies or hang out at a day party while you wait for your next favorite band to get set up and start playing. Poor thing, whatever shall you do? You could sit around feeling sad and jealous OR you could head out to Grand Prairie this Saturday for the sixth annual South By So What?! Music Festival. The festival features bands that have already played SXSW this year and decided to stick around for one more show, making it a perfect destination for anyone who had to stay behind in Dallas this year.

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SXSW Music Festival: Now & Then

Posted by    |    March 13th, 2012 at 11:14 am

The aesthetics in Austin are quickly changing. Clean cut technophiles who previously roamed the Austin Convention Center whispering ideas about the iPhone 5 and swearing that Google+ actually does have a purpose are disappearing; in their place, music enthusiasts with faux-hawks and skinny jeans wander 6th street, their ears open, trying to discover a new favorite band. The SXSW Music Festival has begun.

This time last year, we really started to get to know the Dallas music scene as we interviewed local bands The O’s, The Orbans, Smile Smile and more. We carried our video equipment all over Austin, interviewing these musicians who so willingly let us stick a camera in their faces and ask them questions about their bands. I’m feeling nostalgic, so, please just watch our videos from SXSW 2011 while I go find a kleenex.

Here’s where you can catch The O’s in Austin during SXSW 2012:

3.14.12 St. David’s Church SXSW Official Showcase

3.15.12 Opal Devine’s – Lagunita’s Sonoma Sound Showcase

3.16.12 -Maria’s Taco Express (Sin City Social Club Party)
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The latest trend in shoes? Bare feet.

Posted by    |    April 5th, 2011 at 12:20 pm

Photo courtesy of atticskateshop.comDallasites are looking at the ground today, watching their foot placement, and keeping a keen eye out for dog poo. If you see people running around barefoot, it is not because they left their houses in a late-for-work panic, forgoing shoes to save time. Nor is it because they can’t afford a pair of shoes. These shoeless people can purchase any type of shoe they desire, and they are choosing to be consumers of a certain shoe brand that sends a pair of shoes to a child in need in a one-for-one business model. When you buy a pair of TOMS shoes, a pair is sent to a child in need.

Today is the TOMS Shoes annual One Day Without Shoes, where people ditch their kicks to raise awareness of the impact a pair of shoes has on a child’s life.

Blake Mycoskie has the experience, drive, and spirit to change the world. Founder and Chief Shoe Giver of TOMS Shoes, he has given away over one million pairs of shoes to children in need. You may be familiar with Mycoskie from his stint on The Amazing Race, where he and his sister lost the million dollar prize by 4 minutes – his fault. “I completely epitomize the cliché [that] men will never ask for directions,” he said of his loss, “my sister still has not forgiven me.”

YouPlusDallas heard Mycoskie speak during his SXSW Keynote presentation, where he described a time before TOMS were the Tory Burch flats of Generation Y. He saw a stranger wearing a bright red pair of his TOMS shoes at the airport, and complimented her choice of footwear. (more…)

Breaking up can be fun when you’re really good at channeling anger and heartache into sickeningly catchy songs

Posted by    |    April 1st, 2011 at 3:04 pm

Smile Smile is a tear in your chest that gets bigger with each lyric, until your entire heart is exposed and bleeding the words “I told you so.” Ryan and Jencey took a decidedly thorough approach to calling themselves “Smile Smile” because that’s all we can do when we listen to their happy, cutting lyrics. Upon first listen, it’s, “alright! Let’s dance!” and second listen is when you hear the harmonic hurt and spiteful melodies of a relationship gone wrong. Good times.

Curious to hear their bitter banter after years of being in a band together? It’s quite endearing. YouPlusDallas had Smile Smile in our studios before SXSW to have them play a new song for us, which you can hear in the video above.

“These wonderful people dated, broke up, and now they write songs about it. Doesn’t that sound like fun?” is the introduction for Smile Smile’s SXSW showcase at the Continental Club in Austin. Opening song “Somebody Else” starts with a simple acoustic intro under a song detailing one half of a couple duping the other into believing who they might be, and the proper way to respond to the situation. Which may or may not be to drink heavily and phone the other’s best friend.

Listen to this. Kinda makes you want to pick a fight with your significant other, doesn’t it?

The Orbans SXSW Showcase

Posted by    |    March 28th, 2011 at 2:46 pm

The SXSW music festival kicked of Wednesday, March 16, and YouPlusDallas was hanging out at Speakeasy on Congress to see one of our favorite musical acts grace the stage. “We’re The Orbans, we are from Fort Worth, and we’d like to thank you for helping us kick off this kick ass week,” said lead singer Peter Black. (more…)

Interview with Producer Lee Clay for Dallas International Film Festival film, Beautiful Boy

Posted by    |    March 25th, 2011 at 2:32 pm

Theirs is the story that no parent ever wishes to tell. A married couple on the verge of separation must endure the numbing news that their only son carried out a mass shooting at his University, and took his own life. This is the story of Beautiful Boy, starring Michael Sheen and Maria Bello. YouPlusDallas talks with Producer Lee Clay about his film, which will screen at the Dallas International Film Festival this Spring.

Tell me about your reaction when you found out Beautiful Boy would be screening at DIFF.

I was extremely excited, being from Dallas, I was very happy to be able to kind of bring the movie home, so to speak. Dallas is a great secondary market for distributors, and I feel like this is a movie that will hopefully speak to the Dallas community and possibly shine a light on parenting kids in the Dallas community. (more…)

The O’s SXSW Showcase makes us want to book trip out West

Posted by    |    March 25th, 2011 at 1:43 pm

Picture how a Western movie feels, and the exposition for this article is set. Stephen F’s Bar at the Intercontinental Hotel makes me feel like I left my corset and bouffant hair at home. Not that I have a go-to bouffant hairstyle, because I don’t. But if I did, this would be the place to bust it out.

Climbing the spiral staircase, a man with the stature of Ulysses S. Grant stands at the top. “Are you Taylor?” I ask, having never before met. The O’s visited our YouPlusDallas studios the previous week, but I wasn’t able to meet them due to geeking out at SXSWi. Taylor tells me about their time at our office – learning about the building’s history as the former location of Dallas Observer, a car showroom, and a radio station – where the news of JFK’s assassination was spread.

“I’ve never seen you guys play before, so you better do a good job,” I tell him. “Well then we’ll put on a good show for you. We were going to do a mediocre show, but now we’ll put some effort into it,” he jokes, and goes to help John, his musical other half, set the stage for their SXSW showcase. “We’re The O’s from Dallas, Texas, and we’re very pleased to be here. I like to think of us as a couple of classy dudes, and this is a classy place. Thanks for having us,” said Taylor. (more…)

The Soldier Thread + The Prophet Bar = This Friday

Posted by    |    March 22nd, 2011 at 12:41 pm

Indie Austin Pop Band The Soldier Thread plays on the roof at 512 on 6th Street in Austin, Texas during SXSW 2011. Coming to Dallas this Friday to play The Prophet Bar.

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Have a pen ready

Posted by    |    March 21st, 2011 at 8:54 pm

I would like to preface this story with a contractual obligation:

I (state your name) promise to refer this story to all parties whom I believe would be interested in the following topic.

Good. Thank you. You may now continue reading.

It’s a perfect night for the SXSW Music Festival to kick off – YouPlusDallas is at Lustre Pearl talking with Nelo about their band bond, and how they liken it to using the bathroom. (They said it, not me.) Lead singer Matt Ragland is rocking a new haircut, a contrast from our acoustic interview a few days prior. “I’m screwing it up, aren’t I?” he says of YouPlusDallas’ continuity. Never. (more…)