Each year at South by Southwest, MTV comes to Austin for the Woodies, an awards show highlighting up-and-coming talent. This year’s show is hosted by the Teflon Don himself, rapper Rick Ross, and just like in recent years, it’s all taking place in the Austin American-Statesman parking lot. (We know, it’s weird when we stop and think about it, too.)
The actual awards show at 10 p.m. Thursday featured performers like Desiigner, D.R.A.M., Lil Yachty, Jidenna, Khalid and Ross himself. Before the broadcast, SXSW-ers could mingle at the Woodies festival and catch more live music.
Naturally, we stopped by this year’s party, because we will never say no to brisket nachos right outside our office. Here are 10 things we saw.
No. 1: Very branded carnival booths
Would you like to get a free customized poster by hashtagging a photo #woodies? How about getting some peanut buttery swag by playing Reese’s-themed Plinko? Or perhaps you could check out a Doritos-branded “silent disco,” where people dance to DJs they can only hear in their headphones.
It’s not like that’s even the weirdest thing at SXSW.
No. 2: So much food, OMG
Brisket nachos from Salt Lick. Hot dogs from Frank. Grilled cheese from Burro. And you get a food ticket? This is SXSW at its tastiest.
No. 3: Lines lines liiiiiines
Oh. Oh, you wanted to get into the Woodies? Patience was a very necessary virtue on Thursday afternoon. (And once you got in, hope you didn’t mind waiting in a drink line.)
No. 5: Fashionable friends
We’ve been scoping out the style at SXSW all week, but the Woodies was a goldmine.
Adrian (middle name Thor) is from Olton originally but lives in Austin, and he describes his vibe as '80s music meets modern style. Gotta say, plaid shirts are making a comeback at this year's fest. His favorite thing he's seen so far at #SXSW? Tickets for free alcohol. #austin360festies #SXSW #woodies
No. 6: Lil Yachty made the crowd mosh
True, “Minnesota,” doesn’t have an aggro groove, but that didn’t stop Lil Boat from encouraging the crowd to mosh it up to his candy trap hit.
No 7: Big Baby D.R.A.M. brought the romance
Wait this isn’t a show about sappy love? No one told our favorite dred-head crooner.
No. 8: After dark the party got glowed up
No. 9: Host Rick Ross got up close and personal with the crowd
The Teflon Don performed some of his hosting duties from a platform in the thick of the crowd giving fans a shot at very close encounters of the Rozay kind.
No. 10 The Best New Artist was a charmer
The Woodies celebrate emerging artists and this year’s Best New Artist winner Khalid seemed genuinely incredulous when he accepted his trophy. “I’m only 19 years old,” he said. And then he thanked his mama.