SXSW wraps with Norah Jones, Timbaland and Mumford and Sons
Among some of the most-buzzed about budding acts were Brooklyn, N.Y. punk rockers The Men and Philadelphia, Austin bluesman Gary Clark Jr., Denver folk-rockers the Lumineers, soul-rockers Alabama Shakes, British soul singer Michael Kiwanuka and country artist Lydia Loveless.Pictures: SXSW 2012
And with that, stars of all stripes and celebrity hit the town to close out SXSW over the weekend.
On Saturday, members of the Austin High band watched their star turn in the premiere of filmmaker Emmett Malloy's "Big Easy Express," then joined documentary subjects Mumford & Sons, Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeroes and Old Crow Medicine Show in an outdoor concert at the University of Texas as the music conference fell into an exhausted heap on its final night.
Across town, Timbaland held a listening party at Perez Hilton's annual to-do. Norah Jones played her new album for an appreciative group of fans. Matthew McConaughey joined The Cult during a free concert. Punk rock icon Bob Mould played "Copper Blue" in its entirety, bringing out the graybeards. And Peter Buck and Mike Mills of R.E.M. joined The Posies and Blitzen Trapper in one final tribute to Big Star frontman Alex Chilton, who passed away two years ago as he was due to participate in SXSW. Mumford & Sons performed in front of thousands of fans on the lawn at the Lyndon Baines Johnson Presidential Library
Superstars such as Bruce Springsteen, Jay-Z, Eminem and others made this the busiest SXSW ever, overflowing with celebrity, secret performances and high-dollar endorsements that made sure the festival looked nothing like the humble event that started 25 years ago with just 200 bands spread over 12 clubs.
"That's real music, ladies and gentlemen," Marcus Mumford told the crowd after the song. "That's real music from real people."
Over at Hilton's party, producer Timbaland took the stage after a long absence from the spotlight.
"I know you been missing me for a while," he said. Timbaland bragged on his own group of favorite collaborators, saying that collaborator Dev was now a member of his "Superfriends" before launching into his latest single, "Break Ya Back," from his forthcoming album "Shock Value III." He also rapped and beat-boxed over abbreviated versions of some of his best-known songs.
"I don't know if I can get off the stage," he said. "I've got too many hits."
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