Two months ago I attended one of the Austin Music Summit meetings at Strange Brew and met Bak Zoumanigui, an Austin podcaster and blogger. A veteran of Austin’s nightlife, his website The FeedBak features videos and podcasts from 2 am interviews, stories in the night and most recently, three excellent shows highlighting the City of Austin’s process of soliciting feedback from citizens at art and music summits. The recommendations for stabilizing the Austin creative ecosystem can be found here.
I’ve been here since the 1970’s, going to school, working at UT, the Austin Public Libraries, as a waitress, gallery assistant and unpaid artist and writer. Artists and musicians created what is a now storied entertainment scene during a time in which housing and the cost of living was kind to creatives. The same two bedroom cottage I rented in Travis Heights for $125 a month in 1976 would sell for at least $500,000 now. Affordability is one of the biggest challenges working artists and musicians face in 21st Century Austin.
This is an ongoing conversation, in the meantime check FeedBak podcasts to catch up:
FDBK Ep. 098 – Save Austin Music Part 1 – Work With The City. Do Not Rely On It
Interviews with Rebecca Farrell, an attorney at Austin Music Law and Tee Double, the founder of Urban Artist Alliance, helping urban artists learn about the business side of the music industry.
FDBK Ep. 099 – Save Austin Music Part 2 – Bet On Music Tech
Bak talks with Chris Bush, the CEO of TipCow, and Dan Redman, founder of Mosaic Sound Collective about how their ventures fit in Mayor Adler’s Omnibus Resolution to preserve the Austin music scene.
Yesterday, Bak talked with Music Summit organizers at City Hall in his 100th podcast for the Feedbak. If you were not able to attend the meetings, these conversations are the next best thing. Please give them a listen and use the link in the photo below for the last in the series. Austin is striving to find ways to keep the city livable for artists and musicians. Thanks Bak, for getting the word out and please consider joining the fight and donating to the FeedBak!