Kina Grannis SXSW Tour Diary 2: BMI Brunch, Hanson Japan Benefit, Bats and More
Kina Grannis SXSW Tour Diary 2: BMI Brunch, Hanson Japan Benefit, Bats and More

Friday, March 18th, Even later o'clock. (Actually, we are well into Saturday at this point.)

Jolly Boys

Perhaps she sees a bat? Kina Grannis played four times at SXSW on Friday.

My day started when I woke in a panic to a sound that was NOT my cell phone. It took me a few seconds to put together that it was the hotel phone right next to me. It took me not even a second to realize that my iPhone was next to me in my bed… meaning I had already touched it today… meaning I had turned of my alarm… meaning I had DEFINITELY slept in way too late and this hotel call had to be my manager freaking out trying to reach me. My iPhone had 2 missed calls and 4 texts. Oh. No. I woke up 10 minutes after we were supposed to be leaving. Lucky for me, I didn't end up being late for all the things I had to do today, but wow. Putting my cell phone across the room for the rest of my stay!

We headed into the city to check in and get my artist pass. Nothing too exciting here except that there was a teeny bat flying around inside the convention center and I found it incredibly cute. Austin is known for its bats, if you didn't know, you should try to see them fly out from under South Congress bridge at some point in your life!

So then the fun began! I had my first performance at SXSW at the BMI brunch at Four Seasons. There was a huge turnout! Met a ton of great people, ran into some friends, and even caught a wonderful performance by The Civil Wars. Shortly after that, I was swept away to The Orchard happy hour where I got to hang out and play for all the lovely people at my label AND eat amazing fried chicken.

After my first two performances there was a lot of walking around from place to place, meeting up with people, doing interviews, melting in the sun and humidity, and trying to catch shows here and there when I could. We stopped in for a moment at Stubb's, and being there just really makes it all sink in--just how many bands are here, not to mention, fans and music supporters from all over the world, tons of companies and's amazing.

I eventually stopped into the Hilton to pickup my guitar from my agent's room, and to my surprise, we walked straight into a free Brooke Fraser performance in the lobby. She was lovely as expected and I had the honor of telling her so after the show.

Later on I played a fun little set at a charming place by the university called the Arab Cowboy. Met some really great people there, had a smoothie, tried out some new songs. It was a good time!

Earlier in the day I got wind of a benefit live stream show for Japan that Hanson was organizing. The recent tragedies in Japan have broken my heart and I knew I had to be a part of this. I met up with the Hanson brothers around midnight at a studio downtown to shoot a couple songs for the show. It was a great feeling to know that the musicians at SXSW were coming together to try bring some help and hope to Japan and I was honored to be a part of that.

My night ended up at a party for The Orchard. This was one of the first times I've had an opportunity to really hang out for an extended amount of time and get to know the people at my label (they're in NY, i'm in LA), and it was an awesome night. I already knew that they were capable, creative, forward-thinking people, but tonight I really got to know them as fellow humans and that was wonderful. They are just great, genuine, fun people.

I am loving how SXSW brings people together in ways that are normally impossible. it's pretty amazing.