The first annual SXSW Music Hackathon Championship was a win for everyone involved! We brought together over 100 of the top software developers and designers from previous music hackathons, music tech companies, and the Austin tech and music scene, and provided a platform for the most innovative companies in music technology to have their products deployed by these champion hackers.
Over 30 teams stayed up for 24 hours and submitted their projects to be selected as finalists by the judges. 11 finalists were named and they presented in the Austin Convention Center to a panel of judges including Alex Ebert (Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros), Mack Maine (President of Young Money Entertainment), James Williamson (guitarist from The Stooges), Stephen White (President of Gracenote), and Jonathan Dworkin (SVP of Digital for Warner Music Group).
The judges chose MOOT as the AT&T Grand Prize winner, taking home $10,000. MOOT is "like an Instagram for music" that allows for simple and instant multi-track music creation using Beats Music and Echonest APIs. This team will now receive mentorship from Travis Laurendine of CODEMKRS and members of Beats Music and Echonest including a conversation with Ian Rogers the CEO of Beats Music.
The $2500 prize for best hack benefitting artists went to AR Pop, which adds augmented reality instruments to any surface. The $1000 prize for the best hack benefitting fans went to Crowdscaler, which allows the audience to interact with the live show from their phones, becoming additional screens and speakers for the concert. Chevrolet awarded a $2000 prize for best use of its API to MySongs, which creates shared playlists for people traveling in cars together. Additional prizes were awarded by Tech Open Air Berlin, Rdio, Beats Music, Gracenote, Senzari, Echonest, Spotify, TouchTunes, and Jawbone. Other sponsors included Choose Digital, Open Aura, Decibel, Ableton, and Warner Music Group.
Organizer Travis Laurendine said, “I’ve organized a bunch of music hackathons and attended even more. Never has there been such a gathering of talent and technology in one hackathon. In addition to the traditional hacking of the browser and mobile phone, this hackathon added the official SXSW live music experience, the living room via Uverse, cars via Chevy, and jukeboxes/bars via Touchtunes. Nearly all aspects of the music experience were available to be hacked with brand new technologies at the hackers fingertips. Plus this event actually brought real musicians into the mix. Some of the most talented musicians in town for SXSW, including Grammy winners and international touring acts, participated. The musicians worked on teams with the hackers, performed inside the hackathon, judged the winners, and the performed at the afterparty. The combination of these additional elements allows me to stake the claim that this was the best music hackathon in history.”
Introducing the first annual SXSW Music Hackathon Championship, presented by AT&T U-verse with GigaPower, where world-class hackers and designers will have 24 hours to create new tech innovations in the music space for artists, industry, and fans. The SXSW Music Hackathon is FREE and open to the public (with approved RSVP below), and will take place over a 24-hour period beginning at 2:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 12th until 2:00 p.m. Thursday, March 13th at the Hilton Austin Downtown, with the Championship Awards Show to follow on Friday, March 14th.
Using their programming know-how and our collection of music-tech APIs, teams will have 24 hours to work on their prototypes and compete for the AT&T Grand Prize of $10,000 plus a grand prize package; 2nd prize of $2,500 and 3rd prize of $1,000. The Hackathon Championship Awards Show will be held on Friday, March 14th from 6:00PM - 7:30PM at Austin Ballroom in Ballroom D, Austin Convention Center with a huge afterparty to follow.
Judges will include Alex Ebert (frontman for Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros), Jermaine "Mack Maine" Preyan (rapper and President of Young Money Ent.), James Williamson (guitarist for The Stooges/Electrical Engineer), Stephen Garcia, (Executive Director of Product for Beats Music) and Stephen White (President of Gracenote). Following the awards, join the winners for an after-party featuring a supergroup of artists.
To participate in the first ever SXSW Music Hackathon Championship, please RSVP with the form below. All interested hackers and designers will be reviewed and contacted regarding their selection to participate. (SXSW badge registration is NOT required to participate, but encouraged.)
The Music Hackathon Championship is proud to have AT&T U-verse with GigaPower as the event’s presenting sponsor. Further sponsorship and API support comes from Tech Open Air Berlin, Beats Music, Choose Digital, Warner Music Group, Gracenote, Rdio, Senzari, The Echo Nest, Spotify, and more.
Interested in sponsorships/API involvement? Email Luann Williams for more info. Produced in coordination with Travis Laurendine of CODEMKRS.
Rules and Terms & Conditions can be found here.
SXSW Music Hackathon Championship
When: Wednesday, March 12th - Thursday, March 13th, 2:00PM - 2:00PM
Where: Hilton Austin Downtown
SXSW Music Hackathon Championship Awards
When: Friday, March 14th, 6:00pm (afterparty to follow)
Where: Austin Ballroom in Ballroom D, Austin Convention Center
SXSW Music Hackathon Championship Sponsors