Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Living out the dreams of my 2nd-grade self

Who remembers 1997? I was a quiet little 2nd grader, who was completely infatuated with all things HANSON. Mmmbop was my jam! I knew every word of that song, and would love to belt it out on the bus ride home with my friends. I recently got to relive those glory days while I spent Spring Break in Austin, Texas!

Every year, during the second week of March, the city of Austin is flooded with indie music junkies for the South by Southwest music festival. People travel from the world around to attend South by, and it is SO worth it! It's 6 straight days of music. Almost 2,000 bands, and nearly 20,000 attendees.

My most difficult decisions the entire week were between which bands to see-- it was a great week! In a few cases, I had to sacrifice seeing one band for another because they happened to be playing at the same time in venues across town from each other. I was fortunate enough to see tons and tons of great performers like Janelle Monae, B.o.B., Wiz, The Strokes, Bright Eyes, Doomtree, The Hood Internet, Snoop, Man Man, Thee Attacks, and sooooo many others!

I spent the last night of the festival catching a showcase by a group of DJs and mixers, when I heard someone in the crowd behind me talking about a show she was planning on going to later that night. Guess who she was talking about.... yes, that's right, HANSON. When I heard that, I kind of flipped out. I had always wanted to see them live, but for one reason or another it had never happened, but now was my chance!! It was easily one of the best shows I've been to. You can tell how much they love their music and want to share it with their fans. Their hooks are incredibly catchy, and shamelessly pop-y, and that's what makes them great in my mind. Well, that and the fact that they're so passionate about many causes! They donate a significant amount of their proceeds from several albums toward research and prevention of AIDS in Africa. They've worked with TOMS Shoes to fight poverty and provide shoes to children who don't have any. While at South by Southwest, Hanson organized a live stream to support those affected by the earthquake and following tsunamis in Japan and surrounding pacific islands. They're not only in touch with themselves, their music and their fans, but also with those they can help!

So, check Hanson out, if you have a chance! You'll see that they've grown quite a bit since 1997. And 2nd grade me would be SO elated that I got to see them in person! Too cool, dude. Too cool.