When I tell people that both of my roommates are musicians, they tend to say, “I bet the drumming and guitar playing gets distracting! I am so sorry.” But, I love it. I’m the kind of person who needs something going on while I work or study. So having music playing twenty-four seven in my apartment is heaven.
One of my roommates, Scott Nemenz, has been touring on and off with Joshua James since August (If you haven’t heard of him yet, you should listen!). When I found out that they would be coming down here for South By Southwest, I was thrilled to watch them perform. I was even more thrilled to find out that the band would be staying at my place for the whole week.
I didn’t spend all of SXSW with the band though. Since I didn’t have a badge, I couldn’t go to the conventions and since I am underage, I couldn’t go with them to shows that were 21 and up. I spent a lot of time apart from the band with a few friends, going to as many free shows as possible. But at the end of the day (more like early early morning) it was nice just sitting with the four men, getting to know them, laughing, watching movies and eventually falling asleep.
I did get certain privileges though.
Rock Rattle N’ Roll at the Rattle Inn
This was the first day I actually got to spend time with the band. When I got up to the entrance of the venue, I was stopped by a man saying that it was only 21 and up. Usually I would just walk away and find some other place that would let me in, but in this case I just called Scott.
After I hung up with Scott, I walked around to the side and saw him with the rest of the guys getting their instruments out of their van. All I had to do was hold one of their backpacks while walking inside with them. Never in my life was I able to say “I’m with the band,” and get in. It was exciting to be able to do so.
The main reason I went to the Rattle Inn was to watch them play. But when I got inside I saw someone very familiar on the stage. Did you know that Creed from The Office sings and plays guitar? Yeah, neither did I until this day. Being able to talk to him as he walked off the stage definitely put me in a whole new level of excitement. I guess you can say I was a bit star struck.
Adam McKee, A Fine Frenzy and Train
After they played at the Rattle Inn, I met them outside by their van. That’s when I was informed that they got me a wristband to their next show as the opening act of A Fine Frenzy and Train.
When we got to the next venue where they would perform, I was able to skip the lines and even got to enter through the artist entrance. I got to hang out backstage and hear Adam McKee mess around with his guitar before it was his turn to get on stage.
After Joshua James performed (by the way, it was too good for words) they packed up and left for their 23-hour drive back to Utah where they had to rehearse for an upcoming show.
After saying our goodbyes outside and taking a few pictures, I went back inside with my brother to watch and enjoy the talent of A Fine Frenzy and Train.
My first SXSW experience was definitely one that I will always remember. Having a four person band stay at your place for a week may sound frustrating to some people but this group of guys were so considerate and incredibly friendly that I never wanted them to leave. The perks of having a band stay at your place are great but the best part was that I got to meet three new people and at the end of the day call them my friends.