Wednesday night I was on Rainey street watching Twin Peaks play the French Kiss Records showcase, it was great, it was rocking, and then the first text message hit, “horrible accident on Red River, there are bodies everywhere.” The texts came quickly after that, friends at the scene were sending pictures of the chaos, while I tried to get everyone from our agency and build teams the news and confirm that all our people were safe.

Scary stuff. A senseless tragedy at the very heart of the music fest. My heart goes out to the people who died and were injured, one of the fatalities worked at Massive Music, a music house who we work with regularly. So sad.

That was late Wednesday night, I could see the accident scene from my hotel room and when I woke up the next morning the police were still on site recording evidence. It made me wonder if pressing on with our big show at SXSW was the right thing to do that day, under the circumstances.

The vibe on the street was pretty weird, the police were everywhere and they’d reinforced the barricades on the closed streets. People were a little more quiet at the activations we were doing, but the day shows continued, music rang out, festival goers with beers in hand talked about what they’d seen and friends they knew who were involved in the tragic events. We carried on and made the best of it, knowing things can change very quickly. In the face of tragedy we decided to celebrated life.

Night came, the Lady Gaga show was beyond great, and we all danced our asses off while she was riding a certain mechanical pig.


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