Headphone Tourist

SXSW AustinIf Elton John was the only artist you recognized during this year’s Grammy Awards, then it’s high time you tried on some new tunes. To assist you, NPR has compiled a 100-song playlist you can download until April 4th. Featured are the artists performing at this year’s South by Southwest (SXSW) festival.

Doc's Austin Texas

SXSW is an annual celebration of all that’s new in music, film, and technology held in Austin, Texas. I mark it down as a “must go” every year and every year March takes me by surprise and I’m sitting at home wondering how I’ve missed it yet again. It’s only one of many things that astound me in March. The list also includes the smell of corned beef, Daylight Savings Time and the early eruption of garlic in my garden.

I’m suggesting you download the playlist onto your iPod and, assuming you’ve not abandoned your New Year’s resolution to go to the gym, spend the next 6 hours on the treadmill sampling what’s happening today in music venues around the globe. I guarantee you’ll find at least 6 or 7 tunes that make you smile. Or dance. (I defy you to listen to Red Baraat’s Shruggy Ji and remain stationary.)

Or don’t. It’s okay to continue listening to Physical Graffiti. I judge not. But if you’re in the mood for a virtual trip (think JT going to Carolina in his mind), head to Austin. Locate a Peacemaker from Beerworks, assemble a football-sized burrito, and pop on the headphones. Clear the furniture from the room first, in case the need to rave arises.

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