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At SXSW, South Park Mexican drew huge all-ages crowds for both his Thursday-night performance at the Back Room and his Thursday-afternoon participation in a panel discussion at the convention center. Along with Matthew Knowles, controversial manager of Destiny's Child, and Teresa La Barbara Whites of Columbia Records, SPM (a.k.a. Carlos Coy) talked about, among other things, how to market music. Step one, he said: Know your market.

Standing on his feet for six hours a day at flea markets, pushing cassette tapes, hanging out at racetracks, pushing cassette tapes, or driving around his neighborhood, pushing cassette tapes, constituted the brunt of Coy's marketing strategy. Having a Web site or selling downloadable music obviously did not.

Coy sold 60,000 copies of his most recent album, The 3rd Wish: To Rock the World (on Coy's Dope House Records label), the first day of its release this past summer. With a Dope House Records Web page that either sold CDs directly from its site (or linked to an on-line retailer) or charged fees for downloadable MP3 files, Coy may have sold 60,001 albums.

Urban music might want to get on the eboat, the sooner the better. At the panel discussion Knowles said he believes the day will come, possibly two years from now, when shoppers will be able to walk into a record store and create and purchase compilation discs. Pshhhh! Earth calling Matthew: Shoppers do that now -- from the privacy of their homes. Where have these urbanites been the past five years?

Houston, We Had a Problem

Originally only a handful of Houston acts were scheduled to play official SXSW showcases this year. Come Wednesday, March 15, day one of SXSW, 29 Houston bands had found slots. The simple explanation: cancellations. -- Anthony MarianiE-mail Anthony Mariani at anthony.mariani@ houstonpress.com.

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