When the band I was in was gathering interest from the music industry in the mid 1970s, we weren't having to compete with Gerry and the Pacemakers, The Searchers, The Hollies, The Tremolos, the Four Pennies, Heinz, Wayne Fontana, Amen Corner and all those other great bands from the 1960s, because they had either moved on to other careers or had jumped to the cabaret circuit.
So, what did we learn at South by South West this year? Well, firstly that it can rain in Texas and did, almost solidly for two days. Countless burger buns were transformed into deformed sponges and all the swag shops were selling umbrellas at exorbitant prices, which, mostly fell apart within minutes of use and in my case, before I had even left the shop.
Each year, Creative Scotland - a public body that supports the arts and creative industries in Scotland - selects the best in Scottish new music to perform in front of the American music industry. The Showcasing Scotland events at SXSW are some of the most anticipated shows of the entire week at the festival. And looking at this year's line up, it's easy to see why.
I really believe the inherent optimism of Americans is a major reason behind their cultural and business successes. Europe certainly has enough smart and talented people, but from my 10 years+ of being around creative people and three years in the startup world, I see many similarities and faults in the two groups.
Now it seems that any band in any country that reaches the point where they think they can and should be breaking into new territories is looking for a showcase to perform at. In fact, ironically, sometimes the only way for a UK act to get some interest from the UK music industry is to play at an international showcase outside of the UK!
The Possibilities are Endless is a film about the celebrated lyricist, Edwyn Collins, a songwriter (his most famous hit single is A Girl Like You), who had the contents of his mind effectively deleted after experiencing a stroke. Placed inside Edwyn's mind, we embark on a remarkable journey from the brink of death back to language, music, life and love.
With artists from across the world descending on Austin's SXSW festival in Texas, Jungle's performances represented a movement towards bucking the egotistical media trend. Not appearing in any of their videos, pictures or artwork and boycotting twitter, their live performance speaks louder than any social media timeline.
Beyond established hotspots such as the US and UK, there's a whole movement of other digital and creative hubs, from Nairobi to Recife and Jakarta to Cairo. Less obvious pools of ideas and talent: growing markets of youth consumers and the originators of new creative ideas, social innovation and cultural leadership.
Travelling from Glasgow to Austin began with bundling ourselves into a taxi with as much gear as we could carry, bleary eyed and ill-prepared. I say ill-prepared because we're recently back from a UK tour and I felt that the best way to prepare myself for our first North American incursion was to ignore that it was happening until the last moment. I packed my case 4 hours before Lewis (drummer/producer) rang my doorbell.