Kimbra at SxSW

20th March 2012

So, moments like this are the entire reason to attend SxSW. This is Kimbra looping “Settle Down” live at the Spotify House. Get your headphones and press play. I insist.

Are you grinning now? Me too.

I caught her performance by accident, I was there to see Dry the River when she stopped by. As you can see, she doesn’t have many intimate venues left in her future. Tickets for the San Francisco show she’s playing with Gotye are on Craigslist for over $1K. I’d been keeping an eye out for her, but was still too slow on the draw. (May Songkick preserve us, amen.)

But there she was, 5 feet away. I still get chills thinking about how arresting it was to hear her. I had some uncharitable fears about seeing her live. Very pretty girls, teamed with professionals who can make a mediocre voice seem amazing, sometimes disappoint. But did you watch that video? It turns out I am a jerk.

Kimbra’s voice is not mediocre. Standing alone in a front yard with zero acoustics, with a mic and a guitar, she made my jaw drop. And watching her perform made me joyful.

What’s more, and this is a big deal to me, she seemed kind. Unassuming, ready smile, making faces when she faltered on a difficult transition. I think you guys would like her.

So, let’s keep rooting for her, shall we? If you get a chance to see her in person, seize it with both hands; kiss it on the mouth.

26 thoughts on “Kimbra at SxSW

  1. Anne At Large

    Very pretty girls, teamed with professionals who can make a mediocre voice seem amazing, sometimes disappoint.

    This does not make you a jerk. This makes the music industry a jerk, that we would have to be suspicious of better looking musicians because only the non-attractive ones could have made it on talent.

    However, this does make Kimbra extra super awesome. Love her style, musical and otherwise.

  2. Kristen

    About two months ago the Kimbra/Gotye show in Chicago got moved from a 700 person venue to a 2500 person venue, signaling to me that I had to buy tickets. So excited for the show!! Thanks for sharing this video. I am rooting for her, and wish I could wear those pants!

  3. Rebecca

    I’ve been in love with Kimbra since you posted the “Settle Down” video a few months ago. Thanks. =)

  4. karla

    hi maggie. thanks for introducing me to her a few months back. she’s certainly a rising star! how great to see this video and your pix, too!

  5. Cindy

    She’s playing here (KCMO) in June. But it’s a big venu and I haven’t purchased a ticket yet (hem and haw). Silly, because the festival is all bands I would love to see.

  6. Dani

    I have a girl crush on kimbra! I like to think I sent her video to you way before it hit the viral bigtime… I just saw it and thought “now Maggie’s gonna love this one!”

  7. Lisa

    Thank you for this post! Now I am even more excited to see her with Gotye in a few short weeks.

  8. Liz

    Oh my, I adore her! I’ve had her on repeat on Spotify since I heard her on the Goyte song. She’s opening for Foster the People when they are in LA in June and I think I am more excited to see her than the headliner. Thanks for posting this video and getting the word out about her!

  9. Wes

    Anyone who liked this should check out her performances at Sing Sing studios. Can’t tell you how many times I’ve listened to those and I still get goosebumps. It’s good to see her getting good reviews on her SXSW performances.

  10. Elizabeth

    Kimbra is the Best! I’m crazy for her song “Cameo Lover” which I can only listen to via YouTube since it’s not been released in the States yet. Thank you for spreading the good news. Kimbra! Yes!

  11. Nora

    Kimbra is my daughter’s favorite these days–my husband took her (7) and her 5 yo brother to see one of Kimbra’s free shows at SXSW (at La Zona Rosa) and they were entranced. Us full-time Austinites like to complain about the SXSW traffic, but opportunities to see artists like Kimbra, and to let our children explore a world of live music, make it all worthwhile. Truth.

  12. Elizabeth

    Whoa. You know how sometimes you’re moved to tears because something big is happening? Like a baby’s being born. This performance just did that to me.

  13. Savannah Olboy

    I first caught Kimbra on Her Cameo Lover video. While it is a great “pop” song, it is not the kind of song that would have typically attracted me. I mention this because I think it shows the importantance of “professionals who can make a mediocre voice seem amazing”. The professionals did not have to improve on Kimbra’s talent or voice – she is so gifted. However, the Cameo Lover video really is an attention grabber. I saw this video last summer and had to look up this artist. I have nearly obsessed over Kimbra ever since. The hook was the unique and very professional video. Great natural talent teamed with some bucks to get her recognition. Give the pros their due.

  14. Lisa

    Maggie, I see you for just a split second at the very end of the video! :) Thanks so much for introducing me to this song a few months ago, and for sharing this incredible version of it with us now! Love love love it.

  15. kaela

    oh my goodness! i love her with gotye but wow…she is stunning and sweet and what amazing music. so glad i found this on a rainy gloomy monday :D

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