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The 7 best things I saw at SXSW

Jack Garratt | Photo by Hope Helmuth for WXPN | hopehelmuth.com
Jack Garratt | Photo by Hope Helmuth for WXPN | hopehelmuth.com

As with the past twenty plus SXSW music festivals I’ve attended, coordinating seeing all the bands I’ve want to see each year I go is a function of timing and serendipity. And it’s nearly impossible to see everything I have on my wish list. At any time, there are both official and unofficial showcases all around the city, and there are literally hundreds of them. SXSW is a sprawling, crowded event where you can see a random band rocking out in a vacant parking lot, or see an emerging buzz band, or if you’re willing to wait in a long line to get into the Spotify house, or the Pandora stage or the Hype Hotel, you might be able to see some big name rock bands or rappers along with bands your industry friends have declared the next big thing. It can get very complex very quickly.

Going into SXSW this year I had a list of 23 artists I wanted to see, and given I was at the festival for less time than usual, I knew a list of that size was over reaching. I managed to see about a dozen shows over the three days I was in Austin. Here’s some of the best things I saw. Continue reading →

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Watch Jack Garratt perform “Breathe Life” and “The Love You’re Given” at SXSW

Jack Garratt | Photo by Hope Helmuth for WXPN | <a href=http://www.hopehelmuth.com/ target="_blank">hopehelmuth.com</a>
Jack Garratt | Photo by Hope Helmuth for WXPN | hopehelmuth.com

The VuHaus showcase at SXSW 2016 kicked off with a short but electrifying performance from UK beatmaker and songwriter Jack Garratt, who released his debut LP Phase in February. Armed with only a keyboard, a drum pad, a microphone and a lot of charisma, Garratt played a five-song set. Watch videos of “Breathe Life” and “The Love You’re Given” below, via VuHaus. Continue reading →

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XPN’s Gotta Hear Song of the Week: “Worry” by Jack Garratt

A photo posted by Jack Garratt (@jackgarratt) on


Singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Jack Garratt quietly made his Philly debut in August 2015 at MilkBoy. Those who atteneded and were familiar with the buzz that was building for him the UK got a glimpse of an exciting new musician. The word “speechless” was used by one reviewer, signaling the arrival of an “artist to watch,” who have the potential to actually deliver. Continue reading →