5 Country-Filled Events You Need to Catch at SXSW 2018
South by Southwest is one of the most buzzed-about events in the U.S., bringing prominent figures from entertainment and media to Austin, Texas, to discuss all things, music, film and news.
Country music's presence at the music festival has grown in recent years (2017 was the year of Garth!), but 2018 may be the best yet to catch your favorite acts. From Willie Nelson to Kane Brown, the genre will have a vast and unique presence when SXSW takes over Austin.
5 Must-See Country Events at SXSW 2018:
Nelson hosts one of the best events during SXSW ... if you can get in. It's on March 15 this year, but you'll need a secret code — or exclusive invite — to get through the door. Nelson's own Luck Reunion finds him uniting with several respected artists in the world of alternative country and Americana. He calls them "Family," and they perform at his secluded ranch in Luck, Texas, built in the1980s as the set for his 1986 film The Red Headed Stranger. The legend is "The Godfather" of this musical family. This year he'll bring his real-life son, Lukas Nelson, and his band Promise of the Real, plus Nikki Lane, Cody Canada, Son Little, Lilly Hiatt, Joshua Hedley and so many more together for a truly eclectic experience. Details here.
Keith Urban has been selected as one of the festival's prominent keynote speakers. SXSW calls upon some of the world's most notable music figures as featured speakers — Garth Brooks, Stevie Nicks and Elvis Costello have delivered compelling conversations in the past — and now it's Urban's turn to hold the mic. "The Fighter" singer will discuss his nearly 20-year career in the music industry, which includes multiple chart-topping singles, five No. 1 albums and countless Grammy, ACM and CMA Awards. Catch that March 16 at 12:30 in the Austin Convention Center (you'll need a badge). Update: Urban will play a set at Stubb's in Austin on March 16, just hours after he gives his talk.
Armed with a fierce new single, "Diane," Cam is bound to put on an impressive show when she returns to SXSW in 2018. She's one of country music's young trailblazers — Cam has become known for her soulful voice, beaming persona and fearless stand in fighting for women's representation in country music. She takes the Trinity Warehouse stage on March 17 at 12AM (Friday late night).
Budweiser Country Club
After bringing their three-level Country Club venue to multiple country music festivals across the country (Stagecoach and CMA Fest, for example) since launching in 2016, Budweiser is finally bringing the experience to SXSW, pairing with some impressive artists to bring country music to fans in a unique fashion. Kane Brown, Old Crow Medicine Show and Elle King will appear on the Fair Market stage, along with burgeoning artists Tenille Townes, Levon, the Sisterhood Band, Colin Elmore & The Danville Train and Dee Jay Silver. They'll all perform on March 15 at various times throughout the day.
For the seventh year in a row, Pandora is offering a SXSW showcase with a span of artists, including several impressive country names. "You Broke Up With Me" singer Walker Hayes, vocal powerhouse Caitlyn Smith, newcomer Devin Dawson and Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real are all on tap to perform on the Pandora stage at the Gatsby on March 13-15. You'll hear some of the most unique voices in the genre.
But there's more! Check the full SXSW schedule to see who else is playing throughout the nine-day festival and conference, taking over Austin from March 9-18.
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