SXSW Music Festival is featuring over 2000 bands

The South by South West music festival got underway on March 15, inundating the city of Austin, Texas with music from every genre imaginable. This portion of the festival, featuring over 2000 bands, kicked off with a big opening party featuring a lineup of newcomers and returning bands to the levent, including a performance by Argentinian group Capsula playing their version of David Bowie’s “The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars” album in its entirety.

The music wasn’t only at the party, of course. Some of the highlights at the festival on opening day included a performance by Iggy Pop playing a 1 hour and 50 minute set of classic and new material at “Austin City Limits” venue, reports Billboard.

The iconic rocker performed with the group that made his upcoming album “Post Pop Depression,” which will be released on March 18. The group is comprised of Queens of the Stone Age’s Josh Homme, Dean Fertita and Troy Van Leeuwen and Artic Monkeys drummer Matt Helders, as well as Chavez’s Matt Sweeney. Tuesday’s 22-song set included eight songs off Pop’s upcoming album.  The group also played classics, such as “Lust for Life” and “The Passenger.” The group has only had one other show to date.

Other highlights at the festival so far included a live rendition of Australian artist Sia singing “Bird Set Free” at SXSW, according to The Consequence of Sound. The performance was broadcast from SXSW on late night’s Jimmy Kimmel Live show. The track is off her new “This is Acting” album.

Meanwhile for country music fans, legendary George Strait, the Avett Brothers and Jimmie Vaughan played a gig on Tuesday for Ray Benson’s birthday bash, Billboard noted. Strait and Benson took to the stage with Asleep at the Wheel to play favorites such as “Troubadour” and “Here for a Good Time.”

The South by South West music festival runs through March 20.  For more information and a full listing of gigs see: http://www.sxsw.com/

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