Treasure MammaL's "Real Talk Diaries" Chapter Four

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The pre-show scene at Taos

Thursday, March 15

"No wonder Austinites hate SXSW," Abe says as city traffic delays our PA system pickup. "You can't get fucking anywhere in the city right now."

We drive for two hours, listening to a jazzercise mix CD a friend made for Abe, as we keep getting snagged on side trips. Eventually, we get to Breakaway Records where our buddy G. lends us his gear. But our afternoon free time has evaporated.

Our first show is at Taos Cooperative, a student housing building for University of Texas. We walk past Jimi Hendrix lookalikes and shirtless bros grilling burgers and down the stairs to Taos' basement.

I don't remember any of my college dorms having basements you could drink, smoke, and throw concerts in. Maybe UT is just different/better that way. The crowd, our youngest yet, gets 110% behind our set (although many don't seem to recognize the Celine Dion cover). Free home-brewed beer doesn't hurt the mood. Hopefully, the positive collegiate energy at Taos is good omen.

We want to hustle to our next show, so the six of us [including J. and Q., a friend of mine

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Dan and Abe getting pumped before the Taos show
who's joined us via Tucson to take photos and party] into the Kia. This is with the PA system stuffed in the trunk [spoiler: We won't even need it] and band gear jammed in the back seat, 16 limbs tangled around it. Jazzercise motivates as we grip seat backs and wizard's robes during sharp turns.

Treasure MammaL hasn't quite double-booked, but we'll be cutting it close. Luckily Katie Rose, point person at Wardenclyffe Gallery, pushes up our set so we can make it work.

This venue is my favorite so far--a small house on the outskirts of town that's being converted into a concert venue and art space. Impromptu murals splash across the white-paneled walls. Tangled grass embraces empty Lone Star cans.

We still have some downtime, which we toggle between the indoor and outdoor stage to watch a few acts (namely Swahili and Galapagos--sadly, we miss Total Unicorn's set).

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Swahili performing at the Wardenclyffe indoor stage
Tye Rabens

We also drink the free coconut water (or Jim Beam, depending on personal preference) and take advantage of the elaborate projector inside to film for the upcoming "Dream Girl" video.

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