Following criticism for its low compensation for stay music acts, SXSW has begrudgingly agreed to a pay improve for artists. Right here’s the most recent.
Purposes for SXSW 2024 opened this week and embody a slight pay bump from earlier choices. $350 per group and $150 for solo artists. That’s a bump of $100 for a bunch and $50 for solo performers. The brand new charges had been posted earlier this month on the SXSW web site, however the group didn’t promote the rise. What hasn’t modified is that artists don’t receives a commission + entry to the pageant—they’ve to decide on. Be paid and pay for the pageant, or receives a commission in a wristband to expertise the pageant.
SXSW stated it’s increasing the perks that include the wristband, together with free meals and drinks. The $35 utility payment which was additionally criticized remains to be in place, although SXSW stated it should waive the payment for “particular native music organizations” with out specifying the waiver necessities. Worldwide artists nonetheless gained’t be paid monetarily and solely have the choice of accepting a wristband.
Artists have been essential of SXSW and its low pay, calling it exploitative. Austin musician Thor Harris has spoken out in regards to the pageant’s dealing with of artists. “SXSW’s pay construction has been considered one of their most shameful points the complete time,” Harris advised KUT 90.5 final yr about his expertise.
“You do properly and get accepted into SXSW, you then’re not purported to say something in regards to the pitiful pay,” provides Audrey Campbell, the frontwoman for a garage-punk band referred to as Pleasure Venom. “As a result of being booked feels good, and it’s what you’re purported to be doing as a musician, proper?”
Hundreds of artists signed a petition demanding SXSW pay its artists extra—asking proprietor Penske Media for a bump to $750 for performers. “As a lot cash as SXSW makes right here, they’ll spare $750 plus wristbands for every artist or band, worldwide or not,” Campbell provides. “I don’t know of one other official pageant that makes you select between the 2. It’s simply ridiculously exploitative.”