Los Lobos guitarist Cesar Rosas
guitarist Cesár Rosas shouted his thanks across SXSW outdoor stage in downtown Austin: “Thank you, music lovers!”
It’s a city full of music lovers. You can see it in the way that people play their music: During country artist Josh T. Pearson
's set (which pretty much broke all of our hearts and put them back together again with every song), every member of the four-person band blurred the lines between human and instrument with their passion. When I tell Pearson’s bassist—a guy named Noah who met Pearson for the first time four days earlier—that I could tell how much he loves music just by watching him, he bubbles over with thanks.
“I need music in my life,” he says. “Sometimes, when I talk about some of my favorite bassists, I just get goosebumps.”
Or there’s Australian artist Gordi
, an indie pop songwriter whose voice rings with relatable honesty (“every fiber of my being’s agreed that what you want can become something you need”), whether she’s belting with abandon or slipping into a sweet falsetto. Gordi introduces herself as Sophie Payten afterwards and mentions she finished medical school recently, and has an internship next year. She tries to keep it on “the back burner,” though, because music is her priority.
Indie pop crooner Joey Dosik
You can see it in the way people watch their music. When R&B/indie pop/soaring voice-coming-from-a-slight-frame musician Joey Dosik
performs at The Barracuda, people are singing along, dancing, sometimes closing their eyes the way you do when you want to make sure you remember something for a long, long time.
Violinist and vocalist Sudan Archives
Or, during a set by violinist, vocalist, and all-around performance artist Sudan Archives
, one woman mouths along the words to nearly every song. She’s so enraptured that I don’t see her pull out her phone one time during the whole set… and what’s a more serious demonstration of love than not looking at your phone for a solid 20 minutes to pay attention to another person?