The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


Alternative atmosphere: Austin City Limits this weekend

Since its inaugural year in 2002, the Austin City Limits Music Festival has rapidly become the premiere music festival in the United States.

Taking place in Zilker Park, which stands in the middle of Austin, Tx., the festival highlights many independent and contracted musical acts, ranging from rock to country to alternative to pop.

Throughout the festival’s history, it has increasingly attracted more and more headliners, including Ryan Adams, The Dandy Warhols, Spoon, Dashboard Confessional, Keane, Coldplay, Oasis, Rilo Kiley and Death Cab for Cutie, among numerous others.

The show has its roots in the historic “Austin City Limits” television series. The PBS staple focused for many years on Texas singers/songwriters and country and folk performers. However, as the Festival has evolved, so has the television broadcast.

The award-winning television series now showcases performers of every musical genre.

Artists on the PBS show in recent years have included Jack Johnson, Etta James, Wilco, Franz Ferdinand, Keith Urban, Ben Harper and Elvis Costello.

This year, the Austin City Limits Music Festival, to be held this weekend (Sept. 15-17), promises to be bigger and better than ever.

For one thing, ACL is working with the City of Austin to install an extremely large irrigation system to eliminate dust concerns during the Festival.

Zilker Park is grassy during early summer, but that grass gets heavily trampled during the Festival, causing conditions to get a little more than dusty.

The Austin City Limits Music Festival also plays host to many charitable organizations.

This year’s “Good for Austin” tent will house the Austin Parks Foundation, Health Alliance for Austin Musicians, Plug-in Partners and the Surfrider Foundation.

All of the organizations are active in Austin year-round.

Obviously, the real accomplishment of this year’s Festival is its stellar lineup of artists to perform across eight stages in Zilker Park.

Friday, Sept. 15 includes performances by Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, Guster, Gnarls Barkley, Los Lonely Boys, Ray Lamontagne, Van Morrison and John Mayer, among others.

Saturday’s lineup will include shows by The Rocket Summer, Nada Surf, Aimee Mann, The Shins, The Raconteurs, Kings of Leon, Iron and Wine and Willie Nelson.

Sunday concludes the festival with The New Pornographers, The Flaming Lips, The New Orleans Social Club, Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals and headliner Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers.

Of course the above bands are only a sampling of the 130 bands that the Festival has booked for the weekend.

One-day passes for ACL are still available. So if your parents aren’t coming to visit this weekend and you probably won’t watch the football game, consider the three-hour drive to Austin for the fifth annual Austin City Limits Music Festival.

Samantha Urban is a Sophomore Journalism major and may be reached for further comment or question at [email protected]

More to Discover