Four New Orleans-based artists selected to perform at SXSW Music Festival

Blato Zlato. Photo by Sarrah Danzinger

The South by Southwest Music Festival (SXSW) announced a third set of guest artists to perform at the 36th annual event in Austin, Texas. The festival offers the opportunity to connect emerging and established artists with professionals in entertainment, technology and media, all sharing a career- and life-changing experience. The first unmissable and international music event on the industry calendar, the SXSW The music festival takes place from March 14 to 20.

More than 7,000 artists apply each year to become official artists of SXSW. These showcases are organized by the festival in collaboration with record labels, booking agencies, management and PR companies, export offices, publishers, media, festivals and more. Previous showcase artists have included Billie Eilish, Kendrick Lamar, Lizzo, Kanye West, Phoebe Bridgers, Tinariwen, Big Thief, The Shins, Amy Winehouse, Katy Perry, Janelle Monae, and more.

Four New Orleans-based artists are among the featured artists: Blato Zlato, Julie Odell, Sam Doores and Stone Cold Jzzle.

Blato Zlato bill themselves as “a mighty Balkan music collective that weaves the magic of traditional Eastern European folk music with contemporary textural majesty. The band captivates listeners with dark, haunting three-part vocal harmonies and from thundering rhythms to odd meters.As a member of the Balkan musical diaspora, Blato Zlato explores the immigrant experience and seeks to build meaningful cultural and musical bridges between continents, with a particular focus on Bulgarian folk songs and compositions based on the Bulgarian language.

The group has been featured several times on Bulgarian national TV and radio and has appeared on Folk Radio UK, NYC Radio Live and Village Voice. In 2019, Blato Zlato released their long-awaited second album, In the wake, which plotted at no. 33 on the Transglobal World Music Chart Top 100 Albums 2019-2020.

New Orleans singer-songwriter Julie Odell weaves her visions of folk, poetry and colorful melodies into a warm and brilliant tapestry. Odell began writing and performing in 2000 while living in Ruston, Louisiana, where she learned to write music on an old upright piano. She then moved to New Orleans, where she carved out a space for her songwriting and performance within the city’s thriving arts communities and transformed her sound into a dynamic force of nature as a conductor.

Odell’s songs balance chaotic, rushing highs with calm lows, sinking momentarily into uncharted corners of his sound map. His anxious outbursts reach heights on the big screen, with lyrics brimming with honesty and imagination, carried by his endlessly versatile and often haunting voice dancing to the beats.

Singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, Sam Doores has played in bands such as Hurray for the Riff Raff, the Tumbleweeds and the Deslondes. Often classified in the folk/country genre, he released an eponymous album in 2020 which “exposes another facet of his musical personality”, writes Jay Mazza in the February 2020 edition of OffBeat. “Recorded over several years in Berlin with copacetic producer and project instigator Anders ‘Ormen’ Christopherson as well as an international cast of co-conspirators, Sam Doores uses strings, vintage organs, marimbas, vibraphones and even an autoharp to create a moody psychedelic vibe. Doores has crafted an intimate and personal album that uses the studio as an instrument.

Stone Cold Jzzle, a rap artist, grew up in the 7th arrondissement near the St. Bernard projects. He rose to some viral notoriety after his 2019 song “Water” was shared online by football team LSU and Odell Beckham Jr. as well as rapper G Herbo.

“I’ve always wanted to rap since I was three years old,” Stone Cold Jzzle said in an interview for OffBeat in February 2020. “I didn’t have the guts to do it until I went to college and was going through some shit, facing expulsion, girlfriend issues. My friends from high school, they were into music, so I just said to them ‘Why don’t you turn down the gear… I could just try to learn something.’ It was about the time my world was coming to an end. It was an outlet for me. »

For more information on the SXSW Music Festival featuring artists, visit here.

Gerald R. Schneider