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Your Guide To NPR At SXSW 2018

We're getting our badges and tote bags ready to see you in Austin, Texas, later this month. Here's your 2018 curated guide to experiencing the South By Southwest (SXSW) Conference and Festival the public radio way. We've got a run-down of panels, meet-ups and, of course, our annual NPR Music showcase.

NPR Music

SXSW Showcase 2018 With Support From iZotope's Spire Studio

On Wednesday, March 14, public radio stations and NPR Music will take over Stubb's BBQ indoor and outdoor stages to present a genre-blending roster of your favorite musicians and emerging artists. Starting at 7:30PM CST in the outdoor Stubb's stage, NPR Music hosts a lineup featuring Lucy Dacus, Superorganism, Low, Okkervil River, Tank and the Bangas, and August Greene (Common, Robert Glasper, Karriem Riggins).

Starting at 8PM CST, public radio Slingshot stations will come together to present a unique indoor series of performances with Gracie & Rachel, Liz Brasher, Hembree, WebsterX, and Mt. Joy.

For the first time support for the NPR Music SXSW Showcase comes from iZotope's Spire Studio, a proud sponsor of NPR Music since 2017.

Music and Platinum badgeholders receive primary access to official music showcases. Film and Interactive badgeholders, SXSW Showcasing Artist wristbands, and Music Festival wristbands have secondary access. All admissions are subject to capacity. Exceptions to be noted in schedule listings and/or at venue entrances. Artists and lineup are subject to change.

Additional Live-Music Programming

Love NPR Music's Alt.Latino? Join host Felix Contreras at the Austin Convention Center on Wednesday, March 14 from 12-2PM CST as he introduces live performances by The Marias and Amara La Negra.

Starting at 12PM CST on Friday, March 16, public radio collective VuHaus hosts a must-watch stage at the Austin Convention Center featuring Sunflower Bean, Lo Moon, Natalie Prass, Nikki Lane, Melat, and The Shacks.

SXSW Music Coverage

The Austin 100, NPR Music's annual list of underground musicians to watch at SXSW, is back. The 100-song mixtape allows users to download every selection for free. Listen on starting today.

NPR Music's All Songs Considered podcast will kick off its annual SXSW coverage with a March 12 episode previewing can't-miss emerging artists from the festival. Bob Boilen, Robin Hilton and Stephen Thompson listened to more than 1,300 songs to produce the essential audio guide for artists performing at SXSW. The All Songs team will bring on-the-ground, daily podcast dispatches of what they saw, heard and raved about from SXSW, along with Talia Schlanger, host and radio producer of WXPN's World Cafe. After SXSW, listeners can expect a recap episode of All Songs detailing their favorite discoveries.

All Songs Considered is available on NPR One and wherever you listen to podcasts.

South X Lullaby Series

NPR Music escapes the bustle of the downtown Austin streets and pairs stripped-down artist performances with intimate settings. Last year's series featured performances by Phoebe Bridgers, L.A. Salami, Lydia Ainsworth, Valerie June, Let's Eat Grandma, Jealous Of The Birds, Nick Hakim, DakhaBrakha, and a duet between Nina Diaz & Y La Bamba's Luz Elena Mendoza.

For all things NPR Music at SXSW 2018, visit and follow the hashtag #NPRsxsw across social channels.

People and Panels

March 10

12:30-1:30 PM CST

The Art of Screen Time with NPR's Anya Kamenetz

Kids are now exposed to their first screens at four months old, compared to four years old in the 1970s. Finally there's a no-nonsense, don't-panic, evidence-based guide to one of the biggest challenges facing parents today: mediating our kids' use of media, when media is like the air we breathe. With this book, Anya Kamenetz—a journalist, award-winning expert on both education and technology, and a mother—takes a refreshingly practical approach. She surveys both the experts and hundreds of fellow parents to find out what they really do at home. She hones a simple message, a riff on Michael Pollan's well-known "Food Rules": Enjoy Screens. Not too much. Mostly with others.

March 11


Prototyping The Future of Public Media with NPR's Michael May

What will the next-generation public media look and sound like? This panel will focus on how public media drives innovation and transformation through prototyping and pilot processes such as accelerators, incubators, and R&D programs. Hear from public media representatives from England, USA, Norway and Canada cover methodology and share their successes and failures.

March 12

3:30 - 4:30 PM CST

Naming & Faming! Understanding Positive Solutions with NPR's Malaka Gharib

We face complex challenges globally – from climate change to inequality to corruption. Usually conversations around these issues start from the problem, not the solution – leading to acrimony and finger-pointing. This undermines action. This session will flip the script – creating a conversation with change-makers about how to focus on inspiring solutions, highlight champions in creative ways and build positive movements for reform that build collective energy.

3:30-3:50 PM CST

Comcast Social Media Lounge with NPR's Joel Sucherman

In its third year, the Comcast Social Media Lounge, Hosted by Techset, will feature daily content and conversations with innovators, creators and entrepreneurs from across media, technology and entertainment. NPR Senior Director of Digital Products Joel Sucherman will be part of panel exploring music innovation and the future of streaming.

March 14

3:30 - 4:30 PM

A Conversation with Rubén Blades with NPR's Felix Contreras

It would be easier to list the things Rubén Blades is not than what he does.

For decades now he has been a creative force as a composer, vocalist, and musician while also working on an ever expanding list of films as an actor. Musicians like Residente, of the politically charged Puerto Rican rap duo Calle 13, sight him as an influence and inspiration for his work as an activist for various humanitarian and social justice causes. And yet despite his status as an icon among Latin musicians and fans he still exhibits his endless vitality by winning the 2017 Latin Grammy Album of the year.

Join SXSW for an intimate and candid conversation with Blades conducted by NPR journalist and host, Felix Contreras of NPR Music's Alt.Latino podcast and radio program.

March 17


Create the World You Want to Live In with NPR's Guy Raz

It takes open eyes to see what we can change for the better and curiosity to dig deep. It takes creativity to turn ideas into action, and just a single voice to speak. We live in a world where the brands we love can help solve the issues we care about, and where one person's story, shared at scale, can inspire a movement.

In conversation with Guy Raz, hear how learning to code inspired supermodel and entrepreneur Karlie Kloss to launch a nonprofit that empowers girls to learn to code and becomes leaders in tech, and how adidas Head of Global Brands Eric Liedtke channeled the power of sport as a connector to change the industry so we can protect our oceans and world around us.

Forward-facing and driven to create a better tomorrow, make your next move to be in it for good.