On the Scene: SXSW Day Four

I didn’t want to see this day arrive, but our last full night in Austin proved to be just as eventful as the first three. Early in the afternoon, I headed over to the Zaragoza Recreation Center for the private celebrity basketball tournament Hoop x Hang sponsored by Hardknock TV, Monster, and Plugged Inc. Headphones. Dorrough Music, Trinidad James, Dee-1, Chase N. Cashe, DJ Hella Yella and more joined forces to face each other in a friendly yet competitive few games of basketball. This was my second year at this event and it’s one that I look forward to because you never know who might swing by. Last year saw the likes of hip-hop great Warren G and Big K.R.I.T. I also got a chance to see one of my favorite radio and TV personalities, Devi Dev from Houston’s 93.7 The Beat.

After the Hoop x Hang we swung by 6th street for more food and fun. We ventured by the Complex Magazine house and Fader Fort to see Cam’Ron and JoJo respectively. Our last night ended on an epic note at the Illmore with a larger than life crew; Young Money. That’s right, YOUNG MONEY. Lil Wayne, Birdman, Lil Twist, Shanell, all hit the stage with guest performances by DJ Drama, DJ Whoo Kid, Mannie Fresh, and Young Jeezy. Backstage was super crazy with 2 Chainz and Lil Wayne drinking and dapping each other up, D. Woods and Chanel West Coast trying to talk over the loud music, and Young Money executives Cortez Bryant and Mack Maine watching their artists command the stage. The night finally ended for us at 6 a.m. I must say, SXSW 2014 was definitely one for the record books. I met so many new people and made so many connections that I am definitely ready for next year. A huge thank you to Jim Deuce, the Famous New York Team, Sean Phazes, and everyone else that made this experience one to remember. See you in 2015 SXSW!

**Please remember the victims that were hurt and killed in the SXSW tragedy. Donations are currently being accepted for the victims via www.sxswcares.com.**

On the Scene: SXSW Day Three

Day Three was a little low-key for myself as the rest of the crew went to work on their individual projects and I got to sleep in a little later than usual. We all met up later in the evening and went to my favorite showcase of SXSW. Solange Knowles along with Puma put on the Saint Heron showcase featuring artists from the Saint Heron compilation that dropped in the Fall of 2013. Solange is a hometown homegirl (and elementary school pal, go Will Rogers Elem!) and I definitely wanted to support her and her artists. I loved this compilation and what she is currently doing with her label Saint Records so I headed over to Cheer Up Charlie’s off Red River. I really was taken to another time and place with these artists. This was the first showcase I really didn’t speak a word but listened to all of the music presented. Iman Omari, KelelaMoses Sumney (him and that guitar!! *swoons*) and more performed along with special guest Tweet. I spotted Luke James, Chef Roble’ Ali and Ingrid Burley (ibtunes) grooving in the crowd.

We capped off the night again at the Illmore partying until the wee hours of the morning. Bun B, The A$AP Mob, Skrillex (one of my new favorite DJ’s), Ty Dolla $ign, and Wiz Khalifa came through and performed hit after hit. Y’all know I’m partial to Bun B because he is also the hometown homie and I grew up listening to him and Pimp C (UGK) in my early days. Wiz Khalifa was on the stage so long, the venue turned on the lights! Wiz kept performing and the crowd was still hype! Check out all the event pics from day three!

On the Scene: SXSW Day Two

Day 2 here in Austin was just as insane as the first. Getting in at 5 a.m. with a call time of 9 a.m. is certain to be a recipe for disaster but when duty (or work) calls, you do what you have to do. The Famous New York team and myself hit the Nice Kicks rooftop pool party with performances by Killa Kyleon, Scotty ATL, and others with appearances by Casey Veggies, Slim Thug, and Joe Budden and Joell Ortiz of rap group Slaughterhouse. Personality LowKeyUHTN hosted the event while the Nice Kicks storefront was packed with partygoers dancing and shopping while showing off their newest and freshest kicks.

During the second part of our day, we jetted to the BET Music Matters Showcase held at one of Austin’s premiere live music venue’s, Emo’s. Mack Wilds, The Internet, and Isaiah Rashad with special guest SZA, performed and mingled with guests while showcasing their talents and watching other artists. Other notable sightings included R&B crooner Luke James, DJ Mustard, DJ Hella Yella, TV personality Amanda Seales (Diva),  and Sr. Entertainment Editor BlogXilla from Global Grind.

Of course we finished the night again at The Illmore. International DJ Steve Aoki raved all over the stage and threw pie at the audience. A$AP Rocky and Trinidad James watched from the crowd as Trae tha Truth, Casey Veggies, and Dom Kennedy hit the stage with Future making a special appearance at 4:30 a.m.

Tired is an understatement but I can’t wait for Day 3!

On the Scene: SXSW Day One

What a first day here in Austin! Here are some pics showcasing our first day at SXSW. The Famous New York team and myself started the night off at the The Woven House hosted by Jagermeister off E. 5th Street and closed the night at the always jumping Illmore hosted by Scoremore and SquadUpBig Sean, Travis Scott, and the G.O.O.D. Music team came through and surprised the crowd at 3 a.m. rapping crowd favorites along with some new hits that definitely did not disappoint. Here are some fun character filled event pics from our first full day in Austin:

Road Trippin’: Essential SXSW Road Trip Playlist

Nothing is better than taking a road-trip with some of your closest family and friends. We are on our way to work and play harder at SXSW in Austin, TX. Houston is about 2 hours from Austin and a good way to pass the time is to put on some tunes and get to singing. Here is a hodge-podge of some of my favorite tunes that put me in a music festival state of mind.  What are some of your favorite songs you put on when you hit the road? Let us know in the comments box. Enjoy!

#SXSW Road Trip to Austin, TX with @famousnewyork; Creative Director Jim Deuce (@JimDecuceNYC) Photographer Patrick Lada (@PatrickLada), Producer Morgan Lynch (@Morganacarta)

#SXSW Road Trip to Austin, TX with @famousnewyork; Creative Director Jim Deuce (@JimDecuceNYC) Photographer Patrick Lada (@PatrickLada), Producer Morgan Lynch (@Morganacarta)

Frontin’ x Pharrell

Sweet Nothing x Calvin Harris Ft. Florence Welch

Electric Feel x MGMT

Talkin’ Bout Nothing x Big K.R.I.T

Fancy x Iggy Azalea ft. Charli XCX

International Players Anthem x UGK ft. OutKast

I Can’t Stop x Flux Pavilion

Stillness is the Move x Solange

Trophies x Drake

Kids x Sleigh Bells

Ready x B.o.B. ft. Future

The Ides of March: Beginning of Festival Season and Daily SXSW Must-Haves

The “Ides of March” are upon us and you know what that means…it’s the start of festival season! Festival season is my favorite time of year because it marks the end of winter, beginning of Spring Break, and my favorite technology, film, and music festival is already underway; Austin’s SXSW (South by Southwest). SXSW is a two week long conference in Austin, TX with the first week featuring new and innovative products and services at the forefront of the technological frontier (Twitter gained popularity here in 2007) with the second week showcasing indie films and music artists along with some of the biggest musical acts in the world like Lady Gaga and Justin Timberlake (whom I was fortunate enough to see last year at the MySpace Secret Show hosted by MySpace and Chevrolet).

In recent years, SXSW has become one of the biggest festivals in the country. There are no tickets to events. If you are lucky enough to purchase a SXSW badge which guarantees you entry into every music showcase, you have to RSVP for every event through Facebook, Twitter, or through certain companies/magazines that are hosting showcases or parties. Popular websites such as Chan-Lo.com and MissDimplez.com have created one-stop shop event guides and put all of the SXSW events in one place so that we can RSVP for showcases and parties at our convenience and not miss out on any of the fun!

I am heading out to Austin, TX on Wednesday, March 12th, so be sure to look out for the good folks over here at MeaganElyce.com. Follow us on twitter (@MeaganElyce) to find out some of our locations and we might have a few goodies and prizes for you! If you’re at SXSW too, email us at askMeaganElyce@gmail.com with some of your favorite photos from concerts and events and we’ll be sure to feature them!

In the meantime, I have compiled a list of items I think you will need while shuffling from event to event or if you’re just hanging out on Austin’s famed 6th street:

Backpack– I know backpack doesn’t exactly say stylish but I learned early on a little cross body purse was not going to hold all of the cool free stuff I got from events plus my essentials. (Claire’s $28.98)

Hand Sanitizer/Wipes– You are going to be meeting people, shaking hands, and touching all kinds of surfaces, you want to have something to clean your hands when it’s time to eat or if there’s no soap in the restrooms.

Water/Snacks– You’ll get pretty thirsty and hungry walking around Austin and the lines for the food trucks and restaurants will be long. Bring a bottle of water and a few granola bars or bags of chips for a quick re-fuel.

Emergen-C– I don’t really like energy drinks so this gives me energy plus protects me from all outside environmental factors and germs with the help of antioxidants and vitamins. (Purchased at local drugstore for $6)

Sunglasses/Hat– It’s going to be a hot and sunny 78 degrees in Texas. You will need some shade. Need I say more? (Forever 21 Round Cat-Eye Frames $5.80)

Wallet/Pouch– I purchased this gem at Target for $5 last year for SXSW. It holds all my important cards and identification plus a little cash. They are all in one place so I don’t have to search for them and I minimize the risk of losing anything.

Battery Pack – Your phone WILL DIE! Outlets are sparse so bring a Jackery or Mophie Juice pack to give your smart phones, tablets, and cameras and a quick recharge for all the Tweeting, Facebooking, and Instagramming you’ll be doing. (Jackery Battery Bar $29.99, Amazon.com)

Lip Balm/Gloss– No one likes dry chapped lips, right? (MAC Partial to Pink $20)

Compact Mirror– You need to see what you look like every now and again and maybe touch up your makeup.

Hand Lotion– See Lip balm/gloss description. Same applies for your hands.

Jacket– At night it can get a little chilly in the Austin streets so it’s nice to have a little jacket to keep warm. I prefer one with a hood just in case it rains! (Jack BB Dakota Faux Leather Jacket w/ detachable hood (old), Karmaloop.com)

Comprehensive SXSW Event Guides:

http://chan-lo.com/2014/03/06/shows-sets-foolery-the-2nd-annual-comprehensive-guide-to-sxsw/

http://missdimplez.com/2014/03/sxsw-2014-music-event-guide/

Aladdin the Ballet

Aladdin the Ballet

This past weekend, I went to the Houston Ballet at the Wortham Center for their latest production, Aladdin. When I first saw the promotions for this show, I knew I had to go. Could you imagine the story of Aladdin being told through dance and song? I definitely could so I scooped up the first pair of tickets I could find since this production was on a limited 2-week run. This ballet was everything I imagined and more. It was magical and beautiful with many surprises during its lengthy 2 hour and 30 minute show time. People were literally on the edge of their seats watching the dancers glide across the stage as they were hypnotized by the drums, strings, and tambourines played by the orchestra. This definitely was not the Disney version of Aladdin but a new creation by choreographer David Bintley of the Birmingham Royal Ballet. This was the American premiere of Aladdin as the world premiere took place in November 2008 in Tokyo, Japan by the National Ballet of Japan. Unfortunately, the last show day of Aladdin was March 2nd, but if you would like to experience other beautiful works to be performed by the Houston Ballet, visit Houstonballet.org for future shows and to purchase tickets. Swan Lake is coming to Houston in June!