Free Official Fun
5 days, 5 shows: The free SXSW official showcases you can't miss
SXSW Music kicks off on Tuesday, March 11 with a full lineup of programming — from celebrity-fueled keynotes to exclusive industry showcase performances. If you didn't get a badge or a wristband, don't fret. We've scoured the lineup to bring you the free official SXSW showcases you can't miss this year. All it will cost is braving the crowds (and picking up one of those new Guest Passes where applicable).
Tuesday, March 11: Cheer Up Charlie's
Start SXSW Music by spending an evening at the new home of Cheer Up Charlie's in the Red River Cultural District. The Austin artist showcase, presented by Cheer Up's and No Play Music, features Royal Teeth, Ume, The Sour Notes, Night Drive and Grape St. It's free and open to the public, subject to venue capacity.
Wednesday, March 12: Palm Door
This free funk and R&B spotlight showcase kicks off at 8 pm with Minneapolis-based Sonny Knight and The Lakers. The fun continues with Adrian Marcel, Sister Sparrow and The Dirty Birds, and closes out with Papa Negro at 1 am.
Thursday, March 13: Butler Park
Classic rock luminary Jimi Hendrix will be celebrated during SXSW at a free Butler Park concert. Curated by Wayne Kramer, the tribute will include performances by Slash, Rusty Anderson (Paul McCartney), Dave Alvin, Phil Alvin, Robby Krieger (The Doors) and more. Los Lonely Boys and Vintage Trouble are the opening acts. Entry requires a free Guest Pass.
Friday, March 14: Butler Park
Foster The People plays the Outdoor Stage at Butler Park on Friday night, bringing you another free high-quality show that requires only a Guest Pass. Opening acts include Young & Sick and Washed Out.
Saturday, March 15: Rowdys Saloon
Wind down from your free SXSW experience with an Americana and folk-centric showcase at Rowdy's Saloon on Saturday. Fort Worth's Whiskey Folk Ramblers and Nashville's Humming House play the showcase, which runs from 8 pm - 2 am.