Student organization connects UT with Austin music scene

Marisa Charpentier

Paul Trinidad and Natalie Lopez see concerts as more than just music — they are opportunities to connect with people in the music industry. This past year, Trinidad and Lopez, both marketing juniors, decided to transform their passion for a variety of music genres into an educational experience by creating Euphoria ATX, an organization that links students with concerts, bands and music professionals in Austin. 

“We wanted people to have a place to go to learn about everything music-related,” Lopez said. “We want to bridge the live music scene in Austin with UT students and make them aware of the opportunities available.”

At the first Euphoria ATX meeting earlier this month, the club greeted its 30 new members with live music and a guest speaker. Trinidad and Lopez brought in Sons of Santos, a folk-rock ensemble with members who are both current and former UT students, to perform. They also invited Matt Sonzala, former hip-hop director for South By Southwest and head of Pushermanagement, to come in and speak about his experience with music marketing. 

“There’s not really anywhere here on campus that gives exposure back to the local market, and I feel like that’s what we do,” Trinidad said.

In addition to introducing local bands and music professionals to students, the club also plans to hold “Come Kick It” events, where members can attend concerts and festivals together. With festivals happening nearly every other weekend and concerts happening on any given night, Austin has endless music opportunities, according to Trinidad.

“We know there are a lot of students passionate about music,” Trinidad said. “We want to serve as that platform for people who have these passions and want to get these experiences.”

This past weekend, the leaders invited members to attend Weird City Hip-Hop Festival. Euphoria ATX leaders also hope to expose members to the backstage aspect of music events. 

“Members also have the opportunity to volunteer at events and see everything that goes on behind the scenes,” Lopez said.

For music production freshman Sean Cronen, the club has already provided opportunities to receive such experiences. During the first meeting, Cronen said he was able to speak with members of Sons of Santos after their performance.

“My dream has always been to have a label or a studio,” Cronen said. “The club is a good place for me to be because it is all about music. It seems like a good opportunity to experience things I could not get anywhere else.” 

Trinidad and Lopez also see this group as a stepping-stone for their careers, using meet-ups with people in the industry as opportunities to network.

“We meet people and get that leverage,” Trinidad said. “They see that we are trying to do something good for the community, and a lot of these people have a similar mentality. When you meet someone who has their heart in it, they’re likely to be supportive.”

At future meetings, Euphoria plans to showcase different performers such as break-dancers, DJs and student musicians. The club will host representatives from Dub Academy, a nonprofit DJ and music production school in Austin, at its meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday. For future meetings, the group has speakers lined up from the music industry including Austin Music Foundation and plans to attend festivals like Fun Fun Fun Fest. Euphoria ATX meets every other Tuesday from 7 to 8:30 p.m. in room 416 of the Sánchez Building. 

Both Trinidad and Lopez said they believe music is not just a hobby for them. 

“I see music as the only thing that is timeless in life,” Trinidad said. “When a track is recorded, it’s like four minutes long, but that track could be played for the next 400 years, and it is going to shape people’s perspectives.”