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Country star Keith Urban will speak at SXSW 2018

Peter Blackstock
pblackstock@statesman.com

Country star Keith Urban will be a featured speaker at South by Southwest in March 2018, the conference and festival revealed Saturday as part of a large announcement covering more than a dozen names across many programming tracks.

Urban will speak as part of “Music Culture and Stories,” one of 24 tracks under the umbrella of SXSW’s Interactive, Film, Music and Convergence groupings. No word yet on whether Urban will also perform, but it seems at least a possibility, given that Urban played at SXSW 2014 as part of an iTunes event at ACL Live. Urban’s last Austin appearance was in 2016 as part of the iHeartCountry Festival at the Erwin Center.

A New Zealand native, Urban became a star in Australia before he began topping the U.S. country charts just after the turn of the century. He’s a four-time Grammy winner with a string of seven records that have reached either No. 1 or No. 2 on Billboard’s country albums chart, including last year’s platinum-selling “Ripcord.”

SXSW Conference programming is organized into 24 Tracks divided between Interactive, Film, Music, and Convergence, presented in a variety of session formats. Once again, SXSW is offering expanded access to events for all registrants. Attendees will receive primary access to programming associated with their badge type but now also enjoy secondary entry to most other SXSW events.

Applications for music artists to perform at SXSW 2018, which runs from March 9-18, are being accepted until Oct. 20.