Bigger in Texas: The Most Massive Acts Booked for SXSW 2014
Blondie will play Yahoo's Brazos Hall on March 13 [photo: IM Times]
Since 1987, the annual South By Southwest (SXSW) festival in Austin, Texas has been a hot spot for young bands to demonstrate their skills to an audience of music industry professionals, with the hopes of developing some international recognition or landing a record deal. However, in more recent years the festival has also become a place to watch some of the biggest names in the business perform at special showcases, corporate-sponsored events, and late-night parties.
[Related: 10 Rising Artists to Catch at SXSW]
Much has already been written about Lady Gaga's gig March 13 at a Doritos-sponsored stage shaped like a 56-foot vending machine. But that’s just the cheese dust on the corn chip snack of high-caliber acts playing SXSW between March 11 and 16. Many of the shows require special tickets in addition to the standard admissions badge. But for those lucky enough to gain access, there are numerous mega-popular acts playing some fairly intimate (compared to arenas) settings. Yahoo Music has put together a rundown of the biggest celebrities that will perform in over Austin next week:
Coldplay - ACL Live at the Moody Theater, 10 p.m.
In their first radio hit, 1990’s "Yellow," Coldplay's Chris Martin sang, "Look at the stars/look how they shine for you." That’s pretty much the theme of Apple's iTunes Festival, which has recruited some of the biggest names for SXSW, including, of course, Coldplay. The Brits will release their sixth album "Ghost Stories" on May 19, but have already issued two full atmospheric preview tracks, "Magic" and "Midnight."
Imagine Dragons - ACL Live at the Moody Theater, 8:30 p.m.
Fresh off their Grammys performance with Kendrick Lamar, Imagine Dragons will open for Coldplay. Expect the quartet to get the crowd pumped with a set of alternative rock-saturated songs with ringing guitars, new wavey keyboards, and steady beats.
50 Cent - 1100 Warehouse, 8 p.m.
The former street thug turned superstar rapper, successful actor, and multimillionaire entrepreneur is returning from a five-year recording hiatus to release "Animal Ambition" on June 3. The release will be 50 Cent's first through a new deal with Caroline/Capitol/UMG. The SXSW show will be livestreamed via social media sharing app Hang w/.