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BBC Music bringing new artists to SXSW

By Mark Savage
BBC Music reporter

image copyrightRelentless Records
image captionNot3s is one of more than 30 UK artists flying out to Texas

BBC Music is bringing some of the UK's most exciting new bands to the South By Southwest festival in Austin, Texas.

BBC Sound of 2018 nominees Pale Waves, Not3s and Jade Bird will all appear at special shows hosted by the British Music Embassy.

Other acts on the line-up include punk poet Frank Turner, rapper Bugzy Malone and pop singer Nina Nesbitt.

They follow in the footsteps of Rag 'N' Bone Man and Royal Blood, who got early US exposure at the festival.

Commonly called SXSW, South By Southwest is the one of the world's most important showcases for new music.

The 10-day event, which runs from 9 to 18 March, attracts artists, talent scouts and record labels from around the world.

Over the years it has helped break such artists as The Strokes and Katy Perry, who generated significant buzz after playing the event as relative unknowns.

Arctic Monkeys also played their first significant US gig at the festival in 2006, attracting huge attention after the UK success of their debut album, Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not.

media captionPale Waves perform Heavenly for BBC Music Sound of 2018.

This year the British Music Embassy will take over the Latitude 30 venue for six nights of shows, starting on 12 March.

Five of those will be hosted by the BBC, showcasing artists championed by Radio 1 and 2, 6 Music, 1 Xtra and BBC Music Introducing.

The line-up ranges from seasoned performers like Gaz Coombes to brand new pop collective Superorganism.

The full line-up can be found on the BBC Music website.

Highlights of the shows will be broadcast by new music specialists Jo Whiley, Steve Lamacq, Huw Stephens and DJ Target on their respective shows.

The gigs are being supported by the Association of Independent Music, the Department for International Trade, the PPL, PRS for Music and the PRS Foundation.

"We're delighted to be supporting over 25 artists to take their first steps into the US," said Vanessa Reed of the PRS Foundation.

She said showcases like SXSW are "a crucial step in any independent musician's career" and noted that every £1 of support given to emerging artists generated an additional £8.90 in revenue.

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