SXSW Music funness actually starts weeks in advance, sometimes months. In late November, with the help of Paige Maguire and Jim Reese, I started hacking on a new online player for KUT. I based it off the very popular, and well documented, JW Player. With the addition of some scripts from Dynamic Drive we had something usable on our hands. Unfortunately there were a couple issues interfacing the player into our current website so the project lost steam. Fast forward a couple of months, Paige and I are frantically hacking on a WordPress plug-in, Wordtube, to handle our live rtmp streams when it hits me, the new online player did rtmp fine, I wonder if we can get the Wordtube playlist into a tab on the new online player? 48 hours before SXSW music began, we STARTED hacking on the new player to get Wordtube’s search script working out of the tabs in this new, SXSW player. By the time the site went live Wednesday morning, it worked. Click here to see this puppy in action.
The audio engineering part of SXSW got started Tuesday night when Fastball stopped by 1A for a “secret showcase” hosted by Texas Music Matters. Fastball’s friends and family were invited to watch an acoustic performance that included new and old material. There is some video and the complete audio from the show here.
Wednesday was pretty quiet but Thursday started what would be a two day residency at Momo’s. We had an ISDN line installed at the club for our live broadcast on Friday and Thursday was a perfect opportunity to test the line. In addition to taking the direct outputs of the Momo’s FOH console and shoving them into an Alesis HD24, I took the unused mono bus output and put that into a Telos ISDN Codec and shipped it back to the station. Back at the station the audio made its way to our streaming encoder via Axia and was sent out to the world with the help of Streamguys. Things sounded great thanks to Cates maning the console. One of the many stand out performances was CLA‘s version of Marilyn Manson’s “The Beautiful People”. You can check it out on KUT’s SXSW player mentioned above. Navigate to the live tab and look for AMIWM SHOWCASE: CLA, magic happens 19:24 into their performance. Playing for Change was also had a great show. Ximena Sariñana, Asa and Monareta finished out the showcase.
While I was setting up the recording and streaming equipment, I was treated to the sounds of Pianist/Singer/Songwriter Eliesha Eagle. She kicks some ass. UPDATE: I just found out Eliesha Eagle was at the station promoting her SXSW shows and I missed her. Catch her on Aielli Unleashed here.
Friday night KUT broadcasted live from Momo’s. After some initial phase problems (bad cable) things went smoothly. The video above is the interior of the remote truck we rented from the Austin School of Music. The TV worked for a while, then someone stepped on the feed and broke the cable : (. It was a great showcase that featured T Bird and The Breaks, Thao With The Get Down Stay Down, The Rosebuds, Jon Langford And The Pine Valley
Cosmonauts, Gary Louris & Mark Olson and Right Or Happy. All the audio is available in the SXSW Player.
I spent all day Saturday pulling and posting audio, missing out on the hip-hop festival The Fader was throwing in the middle of Austin, TX.
Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, KUT streamed all day live from the Mohawk via a Barix Instreamer. Using this little device we took a stereo feed of the Mohawk FOH console and encoded an icecast stream that was shot out to Streamguys right from the club. The icecast server was setup to playback a file whenever the instreamer wasnt connected so the listeners were never left with silence. It was a great setup that worked very well. We will utilize this a lot in the future.
Thats it for SXSW 2009. It was a blasty blast. Special thanks to all the folks that helped co-ordinate and get things where they needed to be. Paige Maguire, Jim Reese, John Craig, Jody Evans, Eli Smith, Leslie Uppinghouse, Biff Parker, The Kate, Cates @ Momo’s, Edward @ Mohawk, TMM and the thousands that came down and made it such fun.