The Venus Guide to SXSW

Illustration by  Holly Walsh

Illustration by Holly Walsh

Half of all music festival attendees are women and the same can be said for Austin’s annual city-wide multimedia festival, South by Southwest (SXSW). However, bands made up of women or people of multiple genders make up only 22% of festival lineups (stats on gender-inclusiveness at SXSW Music in particular aren’t available). Many venues and bookers are trying to ameliorate this issue by throwing showcases during SXSW that feature only majorly female and non-binary musicians and vendors, and we are all about it! Here is the rundown of some Venus-endorsed showcases that are happening next week, all of which are freefreefree.

Tuesday, 3/13:

She Shreds Unofficial SXSW Showcase
When: 12:00pm-8:00pm
Where: Kinda Tropical, 3501 East 7th Street
Featuring: La Luz (Seattle, WA), Speedy Ortiz (Massachusetts), Hinds (Madrid), Shamir Bailey (Las Vegas, NV), Shopping (London), Sammus (Ithaca, NY), Snail Mail (Baltimore, MD), Becca Mancari (Nashville, TN), Haley Heynderickx (Portland, OR), Partner (Sackville, NB), FRENCH VANILLA (Los Angeles, CA), and MINT FIELD (Tijuana)
-All ages, free with RSVP on Do512

We absolutely love She Shreds—a magazine that focuses solely on female guitarists and bassists. The zine has hosted unofficial SXSW showcases for the past several years, and now they’re back to spotlight female and queer musicians from around the world. Genre-wise, this showcase has something for everyone—from the surf-rock strains of La Luz to the infectious disco beats of Shamir Bailey.

Wednesday, 3/14:

Howdy Gals Present SXSWomxn
When: 3:00pm-11:00pm
Where: New Guild Co-Op, 510 West 23rd Street
Featuring: Bedroom (Chicago, IL), Uma Bloo (Chicago, IL), Jade Imagine (Melbourne), Jess Ribeiro (Melbourne), Mamalarky (Austin, TX), RVG (Melbourne), Totally Mild (Melbourne), Divide and Dissolve (Melbourne) and more TBA
-BYOB, free, all ages

In the sausage-fest that is the Austin music scene, it is refreshing (to say the least!) to see a booking collective made up of boss ladies. That is exactly what Howdy Gals is—and they’ve put together a ton of exciting showcases for SXSW 2018. SXSWomxn features female-fronted bands, mainly from Chicago and down under, with a smattering of indie-pop, folk, and punk that guarantees a show full of good vibes.

Poster by Jesus Acosta

Poster by Jesus Acosta

Thursday, 3/15:

Girls to the Front Day Party (Presented by The New Nine and Jenna Million Photography)
Where: 2511 East 6th Street
Featuring: KITTEN (Los Angeles, CA), pronoun (Brooklyn, NY), Pearl Charles (Los Angeles, CA), Violet Days (Stockholm), Alice Phoebe Lou (Berlin)
-Free, all ages

Get your alt-pop indie fix at this all-femme-band day party presented by some insanely talented ladies in the ATX music industry. We’re ready to shimmy.

That’s What She Said Day One (Presented by Roxanne Zech)
When: 2:00pm-8:00pm
Where: Mutual Feelings, 1811 Rosewood Avenue
Featuring: Leggy (Cincinnati, OH), Abelia (Dallas, TX), Partner (Sackville, NB), Living Hour (Winnipeg), Remember Sports (Philadelphia, PA), Adult Mom (Purchase, NY), Hardly Boys (Seattle, WA), Emmy Lee Toyoda (Seattle, WA)
Vendors: Keep Austin Queer, BEX Beauty Lab, and more TBA

Instead of despairing at the lack of female and non-binary representation in the Austin music scene, certified bosswoman Roxanne Zech has decided to single-handedly book her own showcase of badass female musicians for SXSW. We are so pumped that TWSS will host TWO days of shows this time around! Day one features punk, math rock, and alternative bands that can’t miss.

Friday, 3/16:

Girls Rock Day Party (Hosted by Cherrywood Coffeehouse and Girls Rock Austin)
Where: Cherrywood Coffeehouse, 1400 East 38 & ½ Street
Featuring: Monae Miller (Austin, TX), Shweta Doraisamy, WASI (Los Angeles, CA), Rome is not a Town (Gothenburg, Sweden), Jean Caffeine (Austin, TX), Abi and Tristan, Stella Donnelly (Melbourne, AUS), Giant Kitty (Houston, TX), Isabella, The ExBats (Bisbee, AZ), Lung, Geexella (Jacksonville, FL), and Papisa (São Paulo)
-Free, all ages

This is a mega-genre-diverse party—there will be gospel, pop punk, indie, rock ‘n roll, folk, grunge, and hip hop!—and the organization that hosts it every year seeks to empower female, non-binary, and trans youth to make music. Many of the performers are involved with Girls Rock Austin, meaning that they serve as mentors to these young musicians-in-training. Are you crying? We’re crying.

316 twss day 2.jpg

That’s What She Said Day Two (Presented by Roxanne Zech)
When: 1:00pm-7:00pm
Where: Hole in the Wall, 2538 Guadalupe Street
Featuring: Ivy Sole (Philadelphia, PA), Zenizen (Brooklyn, NY), VARSITY (Chicago, IL), Mamalarky (Austin, TX), Hip Modus (Austin, TX), Yaya Bey (Miami, FL), Mal Devisa (Northampton, MA)
Vendors: Luv Fats Ice Cream, BEX Beauty Lab, and more TBA
-Free, 21+

TWSS transitions from a mainly rock-themed first day to a second day of dreamy soul, hip hop, and pop bands from all around the States.

Saturday, 3/17:

The Electric Garden Party (Presented by Onward Indian Touring)
When: 11:00am-2:00am
Where: Spider House Cafe and Ballroom, 2908 Fruth Street
Who we’re excited about: Boytoy, Lola Pistola, Ex-Girlfriends, Fruit & Flowers, and a whole lot more… seriously...
Free, all ages

The Big One (Presented by Do512)
When: Begins 11:30am
Where: Barracuda, 611 East 7th Street
Who we’re excited about: Hinds, Speedy Ortiz, Goat Girl, Mamalarky (this is a great chance to catch these bands if you didn’t before at one of the all-female showcases!)
Free with RSVP on Do512, 21+

More shows:

We're adding more of our picks to our #SXSW highlights on Instagram so check there all week for more sweet show recommmendations from your girl gang. Send us your flyers so we can add them!


Kaitlyn MurphyComment