There will be a significantly upgraded British presence at this year’s South By Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, which takes place March 17-21. A U.K. new talent showcase will be sponsored by BBC Radio 2 and its digital station, 6 Music, in conjunction with the British Phonographic Industry. A second showcase will be aired in the United Kingdom by MTV2.
The Radio 2/6 Music showcase is set for March 18 at Buffalo Billiards and will be headlined by Embrace. The bill will also feature Dogs Die In Hot Cars, Go! Team, James Blunt, Tom Baxter and Amy Smith.
The MTV2 showcase will take place March 19 at La Zona Rosa, where a five-act bill will be headlined by the Music. Also playing are Idlewild, Nine Black Alps, the Magic Numbers and Tom Vek. The network, which visited SXSW for the first time last year, will produce a one-hour special from the showcase to air March 25-26. MTV2 will also broadcast between three and five SXSW specials on its “Gonzo” series, commencing March 21.
The BBC’s commitment to the festival includes extensive broadcasting on Radio 1, Radio 2 and 6 Music. The latter two stations are building their SXSW coverage into a Texan-themed season of programs, and will also launch a dedicated SXSW Web site.
Additional U.K.-based acts confirmed to appear at SXSW include Doves, Robyn Hitchcock, Kaiser Chiefs, 22-20s, Bloc Party, Fatboy Slim, the Kills, Graham Coxon and keynote speaker Robert Plant.