SXSW Adds Jason Isbell, Michael Dell and More to Speaker Roster: Tech Scene and Politics Get Speaker Slots, and WTF is Web3? -SXSW


Jason Isbell at the Old Settlers Music Festival in 2019. The musician was added to this year’s list of SXSW speakers today. (Photo by Jana Birchum)

With just seven weeks until he returns in person, SXSW’s list of speakers grows today with the announcement of a slew of names, including Pfizer Chairman and CEO Dr. Albert Bourla and Vice – Executive President of the European Commission, Margrethe Vestager.

The additions to the schedule follow October’s first speaker series, which included 160 sessions, as well as the announcement from the Planned Parenthood Federation of America and Planned Parenthood Action Fund President and CEO Alexis McGill Johnson, as the first keynote address.

Today’s announcement is heavy on the tech side of things, with familiar figures like Dell Technologies founder Michael Dell. However, there are also plenty of names on the music side of the festival, including Record Store Day co-founder Carrie Coliliton and two SXSW Music veterans: musician and activist Jason Isbell and legendary producer Nile Rodgers.

But the festival announcements (March 11-20) span the 15 lineup tracks. Isbell, who has been open about his addiction issues, will appear with Wes Hurt, founder of CLEAN Cause, an Austin-based beverage company committed to helping people in recovery. At least one of the panels on Web3 and the metaverse will hopefully explain what either of those things are, while the futuristic Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Lynx co-owner Marc Lore will discuss his grand plan to build a utopian city called Telosa (although we loved when Walt Disney had the same idea and called it EPCOT).

“We are thrilled to announce an incredible group of experts and innovators in the technology, health and entertainment industries who are actively shaping the world we live in,” said Hugh Forrest, Chief Technology Officer. programming. “Entrepreneurial luminaries like Michael Dell and industry disruptors like Margrethe Vestager only add to our already strong lineup of creative visionaries working to build a better future.”

Here are the big names added to today’s list:

• Jason Ballard, co-founder and CEO of Icon

• Chairman and CEO of Pfizer, Dr. Albert Bourla

• Jim Breyer, CEO of Breyer Capital

• Michael Dell, CEO of Dell Technologies

• Amber Venz Box, co-founder of LTK

• Artist, urban planner, director and brand consultant Dario Calmese

• Kathryn Paige Harden, professor of psychology at the University of Texas at Austin

• Jason Isbell, Grammy-winning singer-songwriter

• A&E Investigates and award-winning ABC News anchor Elizabeth Vargas

• Wes Hurt, founder of CLEAN Cause

• Huntington, West Virginia Director of the Mayor’s Council on Public Health and Drug Control Policy Jan Rader

• Ben Lamm, Founder and CEO of Colossal Biosciences, and Eriona Hysolli, Head of Biosciences

• Producer, songwriter and philanthropist Linda Perry

• Ericka J. Coulter, Senior Vice President of A&R at Warner Records and CEO of TheBasement series

• Tierney Stout, Director of Global Music Marketing at VANS

• Carrie Coliliton, co-founder of Record Store Day

• Vlad Tenev, CEO of Robinhood Markets

• Margrethe Vestager, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission

In addition to new speakers, several featured sessions were recently announced, including:

Chasing Moonshots & Bringing the Future to Today with Marc Lore, co-owner of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Lynx, and Nora Ali, co-host of the Business Casual podcast.

Design Leadership: Creativity at the Service of Business with Katrina Alcorn, IBM’s Chief Design Officer, Tech Talk | Studio CEO Christie Dames and D-Ford Lab Manager Sandy Fershee.

The Future of the Data Economy: Putting People First with Big Technology founder Alex Kantrowitz and Block (formerly Square) co-founder Jim McKelvey.

Guerrilla Tactics and Asymmetric Political Activism with Gravel Institute Chief Financial Officer Henry Magowan and Co-Executive Director Henry Williams, documentary filmmaker Skye Wallin, former Democratic United States Presidential candidate Marianne Williamson.

Reinvent exploration with National Geographic Society CEO Dr. Jill Tiefenthaler.

Web3, NFT, Metaverse! 3 easy steps to get started with Sandy Carter SVP Unstoppable Domains.

What is the soundtrack of your life? with Hipgnosis Song Management CEO and Founder Merck Mercuriadis and GRAMMY-winning composer, producer, arranger and guitarist Nile Rodgers.

What’s in a Metaverse? with Epyllion CEO Matthew Ball, Epic Games Head of Brand and Advertiser Solutions Raffaella Camera, High Fidelity CEO Philip Rosedale, and technology columnist Charlie Fink.


SXSW 2022, March 11-20. Badges and info about sxsw.com.

And follow all of our SXSW news, reviews, announcements and interviews (along with our incredibly comprehensive archive) at austinchronicle.com/sxsw.

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