This Time Around Austin
“The South by Southwest Music Festival has become one of the most democratic music events of the year. SXSW sees superstars and complete unknowns all getting their moment to shine.” Wired.com March 14 2014
For Hanson SXSW has since early days, been an important truck stop along the road.
An appearance there in 1994, singing acapella to industry executives, secured their first management deal with Christopher Sabec of Triune Music and an eventual record deal with Mercury Records
For many years since then Hanson have taken their music and interests to Austin Texas where “South by Southwest has morphed into a nine-day extravaganza that’s de rigeur for the digerati, music-minded and movie biz alike.” OZY, February 22, 2014
Here, Hanson have supported other musicians, made friends and music partners and become reputable representatives of a certain entrepreneurial approach to the business they love.
In 2009 Taylor Hanson’s side project Tinted Windows showcased and performed at SXSW http://www.roxwel.com/artist/Tinted+Windows.html –
And in 2011, Hanson initiated SXSW for Japan, inviting other musicians to play and hold a 24 hour appeal for The Red Cross relief, following the tsunami in Japan.
In 2014 Taylor Hanson contributed to a discussion called “Tuning out the Train wreck” where he and others talked about the challenges of being in the media and handling celebrity. http://www.mmmboptastic.com/site/2014/03/21/images-taylor-hanson-at-sxsw-2014/
This year Taylor and Isaac were both on a panel discussing the musician as owner of their content and their future as artists.
“CEO panel focuses on the shift toward more content creators (artists) owning their copyrights, running their own business and cultivating their brand successfully as entrepreneurs, as one of the trends representing a portion of the new music and entertainment industry.”
During SXSW many people bumped into Hanson and instagram was alive with excited faces declaring that they had … met their hero, idol or even better, formed a life long attitude of respect for Hanson.
One long time fan of Hanson and friend of Mmmboptastic happened to be in Austin studying and was able to enjoy more than just a little of the SXSW + Hanson = Awesome
Hannah shares her story below,
“As I was under the impression that the ‘Content is CEO’ event was only open to artists and SXSW badge holders, I thought that my opportunity to meet Taylor and Isaac would be as they left the conference room where the panel was hosted. I arrived at around 2.50pm, with the talk due to wrap up at 3pm. The lady on the door saw that I had a music wristband and said that I was FREE TO GO IN. I was delighted but also frustrated at myself for not having turned up earlier.
In the last five or ten minutes of the talk, Taylor was his usual composed, competent and eloquent self. But it was Isaac who stole the show. The discussion at this (late) stage centred on risk-taking in the execution of creative ideas. Isaac brought up the example of Uber, the controversial private taxi app: “It was right there before our eyes. There was no new technology. It just took somebody bold to actually *do* it.” He then asked the audience to bear with him while he looked up a quote. It was from Peter Thiel’s Zero to One. “Brilliant thinking is rare, but courage is in even shorter supply than genius.” Isaac smiled. “There you go,” he said. “Grow the balls.” This was met with a round of applause which brought the session to an end.
The discussion over, a musician quickly engaged Isaac in conversation. Isaac took a copy of his CD and promised to listen to it. Taylor came down from the stage to where I was standing at Isaac’s side. Someone had asked him for a picture, and a short line quickly formed. I happened to be at the very front of it. I said hi to Taylor and shook his hand; I suggested, jokingly, that our picture should be bad so that I could enter it into the MOEYs. He laughed and said, “Oh wow, you’re coming to Hanson Day? We have planned so much cool stuff: it is going to be the best one yet.” We posed for our picture, and I then stepped aside to take a photo for the next person in line. “Wait!” Taylor said. “We forgot to do a bad one!” So I went back over and he… well, the results speak for themselves.
I chatted briefly with Isaac and, again, said that we should take a bad photo for the Paparazzi Hanson contest. Isaac took my phone from my hand and proceeded to take a string of selfies. He, like Taylor, was super-friendly and obviously in very high spirits. By this time, the next panel was being set up and the guys were soon ushered out of the room.
Outside, I was looking through the pictures on my phone when a girl came over and said, “You’re totally geeking out, right?” Yes, yes I was. I think I’ll be geeking out for a while yet.”
While Taylor and Isaac enjoyed the Texas life style and opportunities to meet fans of their music, Zac Hanson worked at 3CG, honing the details and news about Hanson day and encouraging people to get involved.
Since the early Hanson Day events in 2003 and 2007, the journey to Tulsa has drawn more fans and inspired ever more creative experiences down on North Main Street.
If Taylor is right and this year is “ the best one yet,” there will be much celebrating and adventure.
There will also be much anticipation for 2016, when an album launch could be a possibility.
And maybe there are more than a few similarities between SXSW and Hanson day.
In Tulsa, as in Austin, there will be community, festival, sharing, diversity, celebration and creativity, all brewing and growing on the streets, because of the extraordinary power and love of music.
For past Tulsa Times about Hanson Day see;