Lucid Routes SXSW Survival 2016

My SX-Partner-in-Crime, the Fabulous Miss Katie of Lucid Routes, knows what the F is up when it comes to surviving the craziness every 2nd and 3rd week of March in Austin, TX.  I can talk about fashion and pedialyte all day, but Lucid Routes knows the ins and outs of surviving the streets of SXSW every single year… which is why I tether her to my purse.

As the SXSW madness approaches us, a festival of this magnitude can be quite overwhelming. Whether
you are a first time attendee or a SXSW veteran, here are some of the items we packed in our
#SXSurvival2016 guide:
It goes without saying that SXSW is a marathon, and no matter how much you pace yourself,
keeping your energy up is a definite must. We suggest a regimen of Vitamin C, caffeine and lots of water.
Keeping something such as Advil on hand is also not a bad idea. Dressing smart is clutch. The weather in
Austin this time of year can change very quickly from sunny and 85 degrees to cold and rainy.  Regardless
of how hot it is outside, the rooms inside the Convention Center can be chilly. So make sure to dress smart.
Have a sweater or jacket on hand (preferably water resistant), and make sure to wear comfortable shoes.
We suggest Toms, Converse, Havaiana Flip Flops or even a pair of comfortable, light weight boots, that
have been broken in, of course. SXSW is the worst time to break in a pair of new shoes.
Between your necessities, and all the random cool SWAG that will be thrown at you this week, it’s very
easy to accidentally set something down or lose something important in the process. The key is to keep
those hands as empty as possible so that you can consume as much of the complimentary food and
libations SXSW has to offer. The Solution: We suggest The Q Card Case, created by Austin based
company, CM4.
With more smart phones, iPads, and other crazy internet gadgets per capita, it’s not a surprise that the
networks get overloaded and there can be trouble connecting at times. However, this is also a huge strain
on your battery, and can leave you incommunicado. We suggest one of these two portable chargers.
However, remember to plug in your external charger every night.  They take a several hours to
charge. You should also consider bringing a 3 way outlet splitter.  That way you can use any outlet
by sharing with people who are already using it.  Another solution, is to purchase a cheap couple buck
extension cord from Amazon or any store with an electronics department, so you aren’t tethered next to the
outlet the entire time.
Know where the parties are, and get on the list for the ones that require RSVPs. A great article to check out
on how to tackle this beast is “5 ways to find the best SXSW parties and RSVP,” By Music writer and
guru Greg Ackerman.  For all the Eventbrite Parties, we suggest you go paperless and download the
Eventbrite App. Don’t have time to RSVP? for $40, RSVPster will make sure you’re on the list to 100s of
unofficial parties and events during SXSW, saving you the stress and hassle of filling all those of RSVP
forms.  Planning an event during SXSW?  Check out ATX EventSpace. Helmed by native Austinites, the
site is designed specifically for anyone coming into the city looking to book a last-minute party for the
festival. ATX EventSpace features a collection of some of the best bars, restaurants and event spaces
available near downtown, with more being added on a daily basis.
Not sure what to check out? We suggest you check out our friends over at Hippohonk. These kids have
listened to hundreds artists and rated them in a concise, easy to understand list. Additionally, Unofficial
SXSW Guide offers a great, comprehensive list of  FREE Music Events & Parties!  Are you a musician still
looking for SX gigs?  GigTown is sponsoring a huge party at Shiner’s Saloon and they are opening up the
headlining spot to new GigTown artists.  That means the slot is only eligible for artists that signed up
between February 1st – March 1st. Not only is this a great gig with a crapload of people getting weird, but
you’re also going to get paid $500 for your hard work.  Our friends at the Eye in the Sky Collective, the
lovely folks that bring you Float Fest & Austin Music Video Fest,will help judge & make the decision on
who gets to headline the 6th Annual Future of Music Showcase – So be ready!!
Contrary to popular belief, SXSW is actually a conference and can be a great way to network. If you
don’t already have business cards, we suggest going through the official printing sponsor for our Open 
Door Showcase, Post Net.  They print everything from business cards to banners, signs, promotional items
(like apparel, pens, koozies, cups, and a ton of other SWAG items).  Out of Austin? Not to worry, they ship
as well
We frequently receive questions about who are the best Twitter accounts to follow for SXSW — Twitter is
the fastest way to keep in the know regarding the fest. RSVPster previously listed a must-follow Twitter
accounts here, but thought the list could use an update. Consider this list one massive Follow Friday and
be sure to follow @RSVPster for the latest party information, rumors, RSVPs and more. If you think this
list is missing a must-follow account? Tweet RSVPster to let them know.
Unofficial SX-news/updates/party RSVPs/rumors:
Party Sponsors/Blogs/Music/Entertainment websites:
Venues (there are many more bars to list, but here’s a few of our favorites):
Additionally, there are a few twitter handles that we at Lucid Routes suggest you follow:
If you keep these things in mind, you will be sure to prevent being a #SXSWFAIL

Waking Fable | Rock, Soul, and a Saxophone

While I sit down at Royal Blue and listen to the lyrics and sounds of every single one of Waking Fable’s songs off their EP Leave the Moon On, I realize how lucky I am that I not only got the chance to interview them, but also made some new friends.  I feel like I should be sitting in a dark underground bar, dirty martini in hand, yellin “yeahhhhhh get ittt!!” because the words they sing just hit you that much.

Isn’t that the point though?

“You’ve seen me naked with my clothes on.  You’ve seen me cry without a tear.

A bare chested lion.  Used to be sincere.

You used to be sincere.

I polished off the bottle, there’s nothing for the flies.

Love drunk addition, to all of your lies.

And I’ll wonder, whats my number in your cabinet full of hearts..

Is it lonely, one and only… or am I just the start…”

I wonder if it’s recent events in my own life that’s making me fall in love with their lyrics, or if it’s because I’m just so excited for what’s to come for them in the near future.  I feel like a 10th grade cheerleader all over again wanting to jump up and down. Clearly I will not be doing that in Royal Blue tonight; I’ll save that for their upcoming gigs.

Now when I say “them”, I’m referring to Matt MacDonald (Vocals, Rhythm Guitar), Dan Cohen (Vocals, Saxophone), Vinnie Fallico (Lead Guitar), Moses Elias (Bass), and Jeff Edwards (Drums).  From what I learned during our conversation, each of us seated around the backyard tree stump at The Blackheart, is that they all “kind of sing.”  And DO they!  They harmonize the shit out of those lyrics and, while I’m no pro in the vocals department myself, I can 100% appreciate an appealing harmony that makes you wish you had their talent.

I learned a lot about Matt, Dan, and Vinnie in the 2ish hours that we spent together.  Reason #1 that I connected with them immediately was that the two original members, Matt and Dan, are from NY – Long Island and Poughkeepsie, respectively.  I feel that any time I meet someone from NY we have an instant bond – a bond that only people living in Texas that are from NY could understand.

The band started with Matt and Dan meeting in a field up at SUNY Binghamton.  Sorry – a “sexy field of butterflies” according to the guys… and why wouldn’t it be?! The fact that they know all about where I’m from, and that they met while listening to Drive by Incubus, also increased my obsession for them simply because that song warms my heart with memories of my freshman year at SUNY Brockport.

So the story goes… after graduating Binghamton Matt had a 3 month stint in L.A., performing on the streets of Santa Monica all while staying on a buddy’s couch.  After quickly being turned off by the vibe, not to mention the expenses, he and Dan both realized that it was time to give Austin, TX a try.  They had no idea that Austin was the Live Music Capital of the World.  Instead, a simple tip from Dan’s brother made it all happen.  And like most of us that have found ourselves here, it all started with something like, “Alright, well lets go to Austin!”

From day one these guys started hustling and it has absolutely paid off.  What began as open mic performances 4-5 nights out of the week has morphed into hosting their own open mic every week at the popular House Wine of East Austin.  And from what I hear, that place is packed on Mondays!  Super cool.  I’ll obviously be going now.

Enter Vinnie.  Originally from Colorado he had tried the Portland thing; thought about the NYC and L.A. thing; considered the Nashville thing.  Thankfully he ended up in the ATX shortly after Matt and Dan and, like many of us, only knew one person here.  Luckily it was his brother Geno and, lucky for all of us, Geno is the one who invited me to meet these guys.  These guys – Waking Fable – have such respect for one another.  Such camaraderie.  Each one of them respects the others talent and, as it was explained to me, they just knew it was the right fit.  Once they heard what Vinnie was capable of, what they were all capable of, it was an “immediate good feeling”.

In my opinion, any feeling at all that makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside (think hot-tea-and-fuzzy-socks kind of a feeling) is naturally a good thing… and good is always something to “just go with”.

And thankfully Waking Fable did just that.  And the rest is history.

Decked out in suits, bringing that whole profesh look to the stage – not to mention the sax… the full band… the damn good lyrics… the voices… the everything – Waking Fable performs throughout Austin and is available to play at events in the area as well.  Personally, I’ll be checking out their open mic at House Wine as many Mondays as possible.  For all of their performance dates check out the Waking Fable Facebook Page, or the band’s website.

And when you’re there, go say hi!  Introduce yoself!  They’re pretty awesome, even if they didn’t take my clarinet skillz offer.