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It pains Rocks Off to even mention this, because he dreads even reading that four-letter word - let alone thinking about the five-day schmoozeaholic binge it signifies - until after the holidays, but he'll get over it. In the interest of public service, the deadline is midnight this Friday night to submit you or your band's application to SXSW 09. See here for all the details and an application.
Since the number of rejected SXSW applicants this year is bound to approach only the amount of soon-to-be disputed ballots in tonight's election, Rocks Off feels obliged to point out that given all the bootleg/pirate showcases, parking-lot festivals and house parties, many musicians enjoy productive, successful "spring breaks" (as if) in Austin without ever setting foot on a SXSW stage. You're on your own getting hooked up for those, but it's generally not that hard to do.
If you're in a band in Houston, you're bound to know somebody in Austin - because they probably used to live here. Just ask around. - Chris Gray