SXSW Music Festival by the numbers

2,200+ official showcasing bands

43 bands I saw in five days at 28 venues


50 countries represented

2 Guthries, Arlo and Nora, on the same stage to celebrate what would have been this year’s 100th birthday of their father, Woody

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2,500 lucky people who attended Bruce Springsteen’s keynote address

50+ genres Springsteen rattled off in rapid-fire to prove just how broad music has become (“I just want to know what Nintendocore is.’’)

1 morning I was awoken by a band’s sound check - at 9 a.m.


6 Joy Division “Unknown Pleasures’’ T-shirts spotted around town

5 tattoos, at least, on every person wearing that “Unknown Pleasures’’ T-shirt

52 minutes waiting in line to get into Fiona Apple’s show on Wednesday

64 minutes in line to see the Jesus & Mary Chain (and still didn’t get in)

3 times a cashier handed me my change and threw in a demo CD of his own music

1 man strolling 6th Street, the festival’s main drag, on St. Patrick’s Day dressed as a giant pint of Guinness

50 SPF sunscreen every day

4 slices of lousy pizza eaten on the run

4 times I wish I had gotten jalapeño brisket tacos from Stubb’s instead

57 promo stickers plastered on the South Congress bridge advertising the May release of the new Best Coast album

4 hours of sleep on an average night

5 times I vowed I’ll never come back to SXSW

5 times I got excited to return next year

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