Hearsay: Wednesday, March 02, 2005

A couple of weeks from now, HearSay’s gonna write a column about SXSW (March 17-20). The piece will sound exactly like this:

HearSay was psyched to head to Austin for SXSW this year. A lot of Cowtown scenesters, friends, and acquaintances were also on their ways down. Maybe for the first time in a half dozen years, I thought, I won’t have to drink alone!
The problem was that some of the Cowtowners were a little too excited about the music — and not the local kind. Everyone HearSay talked to leading up to the trip was all a-giggle over acts like Son Volt and The Futureheads and Shonen Knife, national acts with major financial backing. In response to my friends’ fanboy-ish enthusiasm I would say something like, “Yeah, I can’t wait to see Collin Herring, Goodwin, and Black Tie Dynasty.” My buds would pause, then resume raving about all the other great national acts on the South-by bill. OK, if we were talking about a for-profit festival, I could empathize with the zeal for big-timers. (The key word is “empathize,” not “understand.” Ain’t a major label act on earth that HearSay would cross the street — let alone pay — to see. Damn skippy, I’m cynical.) But this is SXSW! This is supposed to be a place for local, unsigned acts to try to become not so local and unsigned, not one big party thrown by fat cats merely to sell more fucking c.d.’s!
But that’s SXSW: It’s like a soup kitchen whose boss gives away the food to his richest friends while making the poor people — the people for whom the soup kitchen was built — wash the dishes.
BTW, Herring’s, Goodwin’s, and BTD’s shows rocked. I took them all in ... by myself.

If Teddy Jams In The Woods ...
Sometimes flat-out weird stuff happens, and pathetic souls like HearSay try to divine grand meaning from these odd phenomena. Like last week, when your columnist stumbled on K-Soul (KSOC/94.5-FM) and heard “Teddy’s Jam,” by the late-’80s smoooove R&B group Guy (fronted by R. Kelly). You remember this tune, right? “Jam / Whoah jam / Whoah-ohhh jam / ... Teddy, jam for me!” (If you don’t, you probably grew up in the ’burbs, played soccer, and were friends with kids named Muffy and Biff.) The ka-razy thing is that I had heard the same song a week earlier when last I accidentally tuned into K-Soul. Some spirit, I thought, must be trying to tell me something. But what? The only association I could make involved the one friend from high school who turned me onto Guy, my buddy Kev. What the heck, I thought. I’ll e-mail him. So I did. I asked how he’s doing and if he remembers “Teddy’s Jam.” I never heard back, which I took as a profound message all the same: Sometimes the people who introduce you to Guy avoid discussing Guy via e-mail.
Or maybe the radio is running out of old R&B cadavers to prop up.

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