KUTX MapJam festival focuses on local acts

MapJam

Photo Courtesy of KUTX

A band performs at the first annual MapJam in 2013. This year's event will feature local artisits performing in atypical venues.

Vanessa Sliva

While most music festivals in Austin are filled with national touring artists, the second annual KUTX MapJam puts the spotlight on local acts. 

“This is a day-long moveable music festival that happens in the streets of East Austin,” said MapJam and KUTX producer Haley Howle. “It got started last year because we launched an interactive multimedia project called the Austin Music Map. It’s a website that explores interesting hidden spaces where music is happening in East Austin and the stories around
those communities.”

This year, MapJam will be held at five different venues with eight local bands playing consecutive shows from noon until midnight. The diversity originally sought after with the Austin Music Map remains a strong point in MapJam.

The bands performing range in genre from old country to hip-hop. Each of the bands has been designated a distinct place to play. Some bands will perform at breweries, some will play at a millwork site and others are set to play at Pan Am Park. 

“I’m excited about Pan Am Park,” Howle said. “It’s on top of a hill and at the time we booked it, the sun will be going down and you can see downtown Austin from the hillside. It’s going to be cool.”

Local indie-rock band Growl will play at Delta Millworks, an East Austin lumber mill. The stage will be outside and located on the flatbed of a semi-truck. 

“KUTX found some pretty unique hidden spots in East Austin,” said Sam Houdek, a radio-television-film senior and Growl’s drummer. “I’ve lived here for years and I know a lot of the people don’t get to see these places and get to hear cool bands play.”

Magna Carda, another band set to perform at MapJam, will play at the Historic Scoot Inn, one of Austin’s oldest running breweries. 

“It’s a true Austin event,” said Dougie Do, keyboard and beatmeister of Magna Carda. “We have shows where people come around from other places, which is cool, but this is one where the true people from Austin are going to go.”