After 17 years with Austin Texas conference juggernaut SXSW, Phil Tripp has announced his resignation.
In a short but sweet email to select media today, Tripp said:
“I have resigned from SXSW as their representative for Australia, New Zealand, and Hawaii after 17 years of service. I wish them all the best in the future. Further inquiries should be sent to [email protected].”
The 68-year-old began work as a rep for SXSW in 2002 when just five bands from Australasia were successful in showcasing their work at the five-day music event; those bands played just one show each.
This year, Australia ranked 6th in the list of international countries with the most registrants.
The 2019 edition of SXSW saw a record-setting contingency of Aussie artists showing Texas how we do it down here, including Skegss, Amyl & The Sniffers, Tia Gostelow, WAAX, WAFIA, The Gooch Palms, and Angie McMahon, who took home the coveted Grulke Award.
While SXSW is yet to announce who Australia, New Zealand and Hawaii’s new representative will be for the event, TIO understands the series of meet ‘n’ greet Q&A sessions for prospective attendees won’t be going ahead as scheduled in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane this month.
TIO expects a statement from SXSW regarding the meet and greets over the next 24 hours.
As for Phil Tripp’s next move, it’s well known he has been working on a tell-all book for the last two years, which spans the arc between two murders in the US in his 20s and a variety of infamous misadventures in the ’70s before he emigrated to Australia.
Tripp also attempted to retire from the music business nine years ago when he sold his music directory business to the Treweek brothers at themusic.com.au (then Street Press Australia) in 2010.
Some of those close to Tripp may think his past health issues have played a hand in his decision to resign from the role at SXSW, but TIO understands his health is in good order. Despite cheating death a grand total of three times (one with a heart attack, another via stroke, and when he was in cardiac arrest), Tripp’s doctors are happy with his progress following the insertion of a pacemaker/defibrillator.
TIO is expecting more information to come through from SXSW in the coming days.