Good as The Miserable Rich were at the Institute of Contemporary Arts back in late February I hadn’t planned on seeing them again live for a while. I certainly didnt expect to amble across them under a bridge on the other side of the Atlantic, with an audience of a million or so bats slowly waking to stretch their wings for the evening.  Apologies for the dodgy quality and wind tunnel sound but its not bad for a borrowed point and click stills camera. Also sorry for returning to SXSW but I only just loaded the video onto my computer.

In 1980 the designers of The Congress Avenue Bridge accidentally created crevices on its underside that to any passing bat looked like a perfect home.  It rapidly became an unlikely tourist attraction as the largest urban colony of bats in America, with upto 1.5 million emerging at peak season.
All of this was unknown to me as I wandered back on a Sunday evening after exploring the quirky delights of north Congress.  Pure nosiness led me to try and find out why so many people were staring off the edge and congregating on the banks of the river.

3438183619_58a3b6616cOnce underneath I noticed a sign about bats but my attention was more taken by a band playing right by the waters edge. Clambering over a railing for a better view it quickly dawned on me why they sounded so familiar.  Catching The Miserable Rich live as the sun set under the bridge was a lovely tranquil way to end my trip, and as they finished playing the bats began to emerge flooding out into the night sky. A beautiful memory only slightly spoiled by me going up to “The Rich” to explain how random seeing them was, but which somehow came out as “awkward mumble, youre great you are, mumble, shuffle, music like burt, bbc, ok bye“.

Fortunately the Miserable Rich seemed to spend most of SXSW busking in various spots, a few of which were recorded for posterity by some very skilled cameramen. Check out the “Humble Soul in America” videos on Vimeo here.

The Miserable Rich Myspace / Humble Soul label

Listen: The Miserable Rich – “Boat Song (Sons of Noel & Adrian mix)” (MP3) – Taken from free Wilkonmen compilation

Watch: The Miserable Rich – “Pisshead (Live)” The Black Cab sessions go to SXSW
Humble Soul In America feat Miserable Rich & Denis Jones (beautifully shot videos on Vimeo)

Midnight Cowboys - Sxsw 2009A few more final SXSW MP3’s:

Left Lane Cruiser – “Big Momma” (MP3)Myspace

Pilar Diaz – “Tu Y Yo” (MP3)Myspace

Buff1 – “Beat The Speakers Up” (MP3)Myspace

Colourmusic – “Put in a Little Gas”(MP3)Myspace

Fol Chen – “Cable TV” (MP3)Myspace

Indian Jewelry – “Walk Through Fire” (MP3)Myspace

Keys N Krates – “All Night Long” (MP3) – Myspace

Hymns – “Your Movement” (MP3)Myspace

Caracol – “L’amour est un tricheur” (MP3)Myspace

Denis Jones – “Beginning” (MP3)Myspace

and an oldie from my trip on the “Dillo” to Waterloo Records:

Lightnin’ Hopkins – “Lovin’ Arms” (MP3)
Lightnin’ Hopkins – “Lightnin’ Strikes One More Time” (MP3)

Does anyone know where I can get a SXSW 09 poster? They sold out before I had a chance to buy 🙁
I even went to the amazing Flatstock poster exhibition and they didnt have one… 1000’s of others, but no 09.


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