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SXSW: Day #3

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For the first time all week, the sun came out in full force. Temperatures are nearing the 90’s–alas, warm weather in Austin, TX!


Ah, a good night’s sleep, it’s first time I logged more than five hours the whole trip. This morning I also got to eat breakfast and sort through my SXSW goodie bag for the first time. I’ve got my second wind!

On the bummer-end of things, Nada Surf and Billy Bragg had to cancel our interviews scheduled this week. No hard feelings though, since I’m sure their schedules are pretty packed at this point in time. Bands are playing more day-shows now than ever. Today I met up with Tim Fite, Tapes ‘N Tapes, and Murs…

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Tim Fite
My first meet-up of the day was with Tim Fite and his sideman, Dr. Leisure, who is toying around with the idea of changing his name to The Artist Formerly Known As Little Prince. In person Tim Fite is not much different than his on-stage persona. If you don’t listen to him closely enough, you’ll fail to realize that he’s completely bullshitting you. I mentioned that I hadn’t heard his new album yet (coming out in May), and without cracking a smile, Tim matter-of-factly replied, “I haven’t heard it either. I sent it out to China and India and I’m waiting to get it back. It’s cheaper that way. I hope it doesn’t have any lead in it. That stuff’s dangerous.”

Tim also mentioned that he just performs with Dr. Leisure, because he can’t afford to assemble a touring band. Tim’s performing duties are finished at this year’s SXSW, but he is hosting a couple of showcases. To make things lively, he has been creating homemade giant postcards–one was from Mick Jagger to Keith Richards wishing he was at SXSW, while another one was sent to Roy Orbison (in heaven) from Tom Petty, his former bandmate, who misses playing in the Traveling Wilburys. Welcome to the world of Tim Fite.


Tapes N’ Tapes
An hour later I got to meet Tapes ‘N Tapes for the first time. They’re a couple weeks away from releasing their Dave Fridman produced sophomore album, Walk It Off. They are also performing tonight at Cedar Door (12AM) and have a matinee show tomorrow. Because they became “blog” darlings a couple years ago, one might expect them to walk around with an air of I’m-better-than-you confidence. That couldn’t be further from the truth. They’re down-to-earth, very approachable guys, who would probably rather talk about sports than indie music. They mentioned that their first trip to SXSW coincided with the NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament. They ended up missing a lot of music that year because they came down with a case of March Madness.


Just got done hanging out with Murs. He’s playing a handful of shows here in Austin, but is also scooting over to San Antonio to play a show there tonight. Besides being a fan of his unique approach to hip-hop music, I also love Murs’ sheer candidness. Ask him what’s wrong with hip-hop, he’ll tell you–he won’t side step any issue and will always give you an unfiltered answer. He even realizes his opinion could get him “beat up”, but according to Murs, “Getting beat up is fun, it’s like UFC. Sure I’ll get my ass kick, but afterwards we can all be friends.” Murs’ forthcoming album is called Murs For President, but according to Murs he doesn’t want to be President of The United States of America, “There’s already a great rock band that holds that title.”

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Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.

Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…

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A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.


Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

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WTF Films

Artfully Off

Celebrity All-Star by Sisters Weekend is available now on IFC's Comedy Crib.

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Sisters Weekend isn’t like other comedy groups. It’s filmmaking collaboration between besties Angelo Balassone, Michael Fails and Kat Tadesco, self-described lace-front addicts with great legs who write, direct, design and produce video sketches and cinematic shorts that are so surreally hilarious that they defy categorization. One such short film, Celebrity All-Star, is the newest addition to IFC’s Comedy Crib. Here’s what they had to say about it in a very personal email interview…


IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Celebrity All-Star is a short film about an overworked reality TV coordinator struggling to save her one night off after the cast of C-List celebrities she wrangles gets locked out of their hotel rooms.

IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Sisters Weekend: It’s this short we made for IFC where a talent coordinator named Karen babysits a bunch of weird c-list celebs who are stuck in a hotel bar. It’s everyone you hate from reality TV under one roof – and that roof leaks because it’s a 2-star hotel. There’s a magician, sexy cowboys, and a guy wearing a belt that sucks up his farts.


IFC: What was the genesis of Celebrity All-Star?

Celebrity All-Star was born from our love of embarrassing celebrities. We love a good c-lister in need of a paycheck! We were really interested in the canned politeness people give off when forced to mingle with strangers. The backstory we created is that the cast of this reality show called “Celebrity All-Star” is in the middle of a mandatory round of “get to know each other” drinks in the hotel bar when the room keys stop working. Shows like Celebrity Ghost Hunters and of course The Surreal Life were of inspo, but we thought it
was funny to keep it really vague what kind of show they’re on, and just focus on everyone’s diva antics after the cameras stop rolling.

IFC: Every celebrity in Celebrity All-Star seems familiar. What real-life pop personalities did you look to for inspiration?

Sisters Weekend: Anyone who is trying to plug their branded merch that no one asked for. We love low-rent celebrity. We did, however, directly reference Kylie Jenner’s turd-raison lip color for our fictional teen celebutante Gibby Kyle (played by Mary Houlihan).


IFC: Celebrity seems disgusting yet desirable. What’s your POV? Do you crave it, hate it, or both?

Sisters Weekend: A lot of people chase fame. If you’re practical, you’ll likely switch to chasing success and if you’re smart, you’ll hopefully switch to chasing happiness. But also, “We need money. We need hits. Hits bring money, money bring power, power bring fame, fame change the game,” Young Thug.


IFC: Who are your comedy idols?

Sisters Weekend: Mike grew up renting “Monty Python” tapes from the library and staying up late to watch 2000’s SNL, Kat was super into Andy Kaufman and “Kids In The Hall” in high school, and Angelo was heavily influenced by “Strangers With Candy” and Anna Faris in the Scary Movie franchise, so, our comedy heroes mesh from all over. But, also we idolize a lot of the people we work with in NY-  Lorelei Ramirez, Erin Markey, Mary Houlihan, who are all in the film, Amy Zimmer, Ana Fabrega, Patti Harrison, Sam Taggart. Geniuses! All of Em!

IFC: What’s your favorite moment from the film?

Sisters Weekend: I mean…seeing Mary Houlihan scream at an insane Pomeranian on an iPad is pretty great.

See Sisters Weekend right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib

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