Your Essential 2019 SXSW Music Festival Checklist

SXSW Takeover showcase at ACL Live - Photo by Judy Won

So you got your Music Badge, booked your flight, and found a place to stay, but have you figured out what all you want to check out at the SXSW Music Festival? We’re here to help by providing a game plan for finalizing your festival experience during March.

Before You Leave Home

  • Before your SXSW 2019 adventure starts, be sure to download the SXSW GO App and activate your account. You can try chatting with Abby, the official SXSW Chatbot to get schedule recommendations and discover new music, films, and sessions on the app to add directly to your schedule.

  • To expedite the badge pickup process upload your photo to your SXSW Social account ahead of time!

Event Navigation Tips

  • During the event, lines can be tricky to navigate! Learn more about access and line procedures and our event navigation tools. This year we’ve made it easy for you to check the current status of a venue’s remaining capacity. A Green-Yellow-Red system appears on SXSW GO, online at, and on the large digital Event Status Boards around venues. Admission is subject to capacity.

  • If there's a screening or session you are particularly excited about, request a SXXpress Pass. Jump to the head of the line with a SXXpress Pass! New for 2019, registrants with Platinum, Interactive, Film, and Music Badges are able to request priority access to individual Conference sessions and parties, Music Festival Showcases, Film Festival Screenings, and Comedy Festival Showcases.

  • If you're headed to see any music related docs from the 24 Beats Per Second screenings, please note that The Paramount Theatre and Stateside Theatre have a new bag size limit! Before you get in line for screenings at these historic landmarks make sure your bag will be allowed inside!

Build Your Schedule

  • The best way to get more familiar with the lineup is to hear it, and we offer plenty of ways to do so. You can check out streaming radio shows highlighting announcements and genres on SXSWfm, jam a variety of playlists on Spotify and Apple Music, and surf our Showcasing Artist Music Video Playlist on YouTube.

  • If you’d like some recommendations from some of the trusted authorities on emerging talent, read our Music Preview Guide to SXSW 2019 featuring write-ups on 100+ Showcasing Artists from contributors representing The Austin Chronicle, Pitchfork, She Shreds, Womex, Consequence of Sound, Tone Deaf, BBC Music, NPR Altlatino, Primavera, Apple Music (Beats 1), Billboard, and more.

Programming, Showcases, & More Tips

  • If you haven’t already spent time going through our Music Weekly Roundups, then start with last Thursday’s and work backwards. The roundups feature the most exciting music-related programming announcements of each week, such as artist additions like Broken Social Scene, King Princess, Japanese Breakfast, Judah & the Lion, Zola Jesus, SASAMI, Crumb, Steve Earle, and more. If you’re a completionist with time to spare, dive straight into the SXSW Schedule to see the full list of SXSW artists.

  • Interested in jump-starting your musical career at the SXSW Conference? There are plenty of great sessions in the Music tracks (Making & Marketing Music, Touring & Live Experience, and Music Industry & Culture) that address topics like publishing, touring, stagecraft, songwriting theory, and more. Start with this set of highlighted sessions on DIY making & marketing music and jump into the SXSW Schedule for more great programming.

  • Get to know the many venues for SXSW 2019 and stay tuned for more programming still to come! Be on the lookout for more artist additions and our SXSW Outdoor Stage at Lady Bird Lake full lineup announcement.

See You Soon!

We're looking forward to seeing you at SXSW 2019!

If you still haven't purchased your badge for SXSW 2019, there's still time to join us! Register to attend and book your hotel to begin your SX adventure and help us write the next chapter of SXSW from March 8-17.

By Ari Roth