IT'S always refreshing, and becoming rarer these days, to hear a SXSW success story—the annual music, film, and technology festival has sprawled into a notoriously overwhelming and oversaturated market—but some of our hometown heroes now have their own.
Velvet Caravan, our resident hardworking band of gypsy-jazz-swingers, have been discovered.
Larry Kosson of Kosson Talent, a New York agency specializing in fusion music and innovative blends of genre, discovered the band by chance while at SXSW.
“It’s a classic SXSW story,” Kosson explains. “Most bands that go to SXSW already have agents—what they’re really looking for are either to get signed with a label or a publishing deal. There aren’t that many agents at SXSW, there aren’t that many talent buyers.”
Kosson hadn’t heard of Velvet Caravan, but an industry pal suggested catching them at the luminous Driscoll Hotel.
“They’ll do things that are much more in line with jazz or pop or singer-songwriters,” Kosson explains of the elegant atmosphere.
From the Caravan’s first song, Kosson was hooked.
“They had an x-factor,” he explains. “Their stage presence, their humor. I didn’t know anything about the band! All I did was walk in and I was blown away.”
With their sharp musicianship and unique blend of genres, VC was a perfect fit for Kosson Talent, which is home to diverse artists like Black Violin, Jimmy Webb, Trout Fishing in America, Hypnotic Brass Ensemble, and many more.
“A number of performers I represent have this sort of training in one form that’s crossed over into another form,” says Kosson. “When I choose an artist, number one, it’s music I really like. Number two, I believe that it’s an aesthetic that talent buyers and presenting organizations also like and believe in. I have a network I’ve built over the last 16 years across the country of venues and organizations that book performances, and what I’m trying to do is find things that will fit multiple genres.”
So what’s that mean for the band? High-caliber shows in a larger radius. For better or worse, they’re not our little hometown secret anymore, and as they rise, we’ll be seeing less of them in our neck of the woods.
Catch them this weekend at Unitarian Universalist Church for a soon-to-be-rare intimate concert.
“We’ve already had inquiries, festivals asking about availability, and we haven’t even officially announced yet,” says an enthused Kosson. “I believe this is a really solid signing and I’m excited.”
Sunday, April 17, doors at 3:30 p.m., show at 4 p.m., $20 via uusavannah.org or at door, 12+