Austin City Limits: You Read It Here First
Forget those rumor blogs posting their maybes and could-bes about who's playing the fifth annual Austin City Limits Music Festival, which takes place September 15-17 at Zilker Park; we have the full list, from A (Alexi Murdoch) to Z (Buckwheat Zydeco). While some of the folks were confirmed long ago--Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, the Flaming Lips, Ben Harper and the the Innocent Criminals, Willie Nelson--there are plenty of surprises on the list, among them Van Morrison, Jack White's new band the Raconteurs, hipster hip-hopsters Gnarls Barkley, Canadian bedroom-popsters Feist and Stars, Dallas ex-pats Secret Machines and Ben Kweller and the Rocket Summer and El Lay songstress Aimee Mann. They're among the bigger names scheduled to play the fest, which hasn't even made official this super-secret roster for which plenty of folks have been pining before deciding to make the trek from Dallas to Austin. So here's what we know, which is plenty. Ain't it always?
In order of, well, importance (in my crowded head, anyway), here goes: Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Van Morrison, Willie Nelson, Massive Attack, String Cheese Incident, Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals, the Flaming Lips, Jose Gonzales, John Mayer, the Raconteurs, the Shins, Ween, Los Lonely Boys, Gnarls Barkley, Cat Power and the Memphis Rhythm Band, Secret Machines, Gomez, Kathleen Edwards, Wolf Parade, Jack Ingram, Sparklehorse, Thievery Corporation, Ben Kweller, G. Love and Special Sauce, Matisyahu, Damien Rice, Kings of Leon, Iron & Wine, Kasey Chambers, Aimee Mann, Nickel Creek, Damian Marley, Calexico, the New Pornographers, Son Volt, Guster, Galactic, KT Tunstall, Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, Centro-matic, Marah, Nada Surf, I Love You But I've Chosen Darkness..., Okkervil River, the Black Angels, Explosions in the Sky, Sara Hickman, Trish Murphy, Asleep at the Wheel and about 50 others acts (among them the South Austin Jug Band and the Palm Elementary School Choir) who're there to fill space and kill time while you're reloading your one-hitter. --Robert Wilonsky