As we close the door on 2015, let the 2016 speculation begin! We’ll wait til next month proper to start seriously weighing candidates for South by Southwest keynote speaker, although we’re pegging Phil Collins as an early front-runner. Also, we created this list before Antone’s reopened, and in doing so, failed to note the SXSW-sized hole in Gary Clark Jr.’stour schedule. Representatives for the club say they’ll announce SXSW plans at a later date. Here’s hoping the local blues specialist who helped resurrect the classic Austin institution will host at least one show at the newest incarnation of the club that launched his career.
DEBORAH SENGUPTA STITH
South by Southwest: Janelle Monae and the Wondaland Experience. Could anything be better than wildly creative freak funk queen showcasing the artists from her new label? With a yoga brunch, if we’re lucky.
Austin City Limits Music Festival: Longshot, Prince. More realistic alternate, Missy Misdemeanor.
Fun Fun Fun Fest: A Tribe Called Quest. This is on my FFF wish list every year, but with a series of re-issues in the works, this is the year it might actually happen.
SXSW: Whiskeytown. This year marks 20 years since their first big SXSW splash at a Red River club. If Ryan Adams won’t sign up, a pinch-hitter could be fun.
ACL Fest: Gillian Welch and David Rawlings. We’re getting them in the form of the Dave Rawlings Machine at the Paramount next week, but it’d be nice to hear them with Welch in the spotlight again sometime soon.
Fun Fun Fun: Los Lobos. Hey, if Cheap Trick playing last year prefaced them getting into the Rock Hall, maybe the same could happen for this most deserving bunch.
SXSW: There’s a hole on Big Grams’ tour schedule between March 6 (when the Big Boi/Phantogram collaboration is in Florida) and March 20 (when they play a festival in Alabama). Texas: a completely doable drive for an eclectic, star-stocked act.
ACL Fest: “Swish” is coming. I can feel it. Kanye West, hear my cry.
Fun Fun Fun: South African synth-popper St. Lucia is set to release “Matter” in January. Never was there a better fit for the Blue Stage