With 2023’s SXSW events officially behind us, it’s time to look back on all the madness, chaos, and (above all) fun that went down in Austin, Texas last week. The wild week included a live taping of UPROXX’s Fresh Pair with co-host Katty Customs and Texas hip-hop legend Bun B — powered by our NFT partners STEPN and WAGMI Beach and featuring cocktails by Los Siete Misterios mezcal. All three of those sponsorships underscored the custom nature of Fresh Pair, with bespoke cocktails created just for this event and a sneaker-based NFT collab on the way.
The Fresh Pair event was part of a three-day takeover hosted by the show’s co-host and all-around icon, Just Blaze. Backed by Twelve Rivers Realty and the video game company he cofounded, Brass Lion, Just went all-in this year and the crowd showed up in big numbers.
Night one of the takeover opened with Just Blaze throwing a party in the Native Hostel ballroom which quickly turned into one of those nights that feels like it only happens in the movies. Over the course of more than seven hours (!!!), the superproducer was joined on stage by DJ Jazzy Jeff, Talib Kweli, Bun B, Redman, Jadakiss, Freeway, Beanie Seigel, and eventually even Dave Chappelle. I mean… just look at this scene:
Who in their right mind wouldn’t want to be there that night? Who wouldn’t have been geeked when Dave Chappelle pushed away his (incredibly tough-looking bodyguards) and waded into the crowd for photos? Or when Redman came out spitting absolute fire with the same intensity and speed he had on his fastball in ’99?
The next day, Native Hostel, Brass Lion, and Twelve Rivers hosted Fresh Pair for their first on-the-road live taping. The event featured cocktails and a tasting table by Los Siete Misterios mezcal and was sponsored by STEPN and WAGMI Beach (look for the NFT coming soon!). Katty Customs brought some killer kicks to present to Bun B while he opened up about everything from his early hits to working with Jay-Z.
That taping was followed by a cocktail party with a step and repeat, some bomb barbacoa tacos, and a whole lot of mezcal while DJ Buck Rodgers spun and scratched. Later that night, Blaze hosted another party at Native Hostel’s Ballroom, inviting DJ Natasha Diggs and L3ni of Soul in the Horn with a late-night appearance by special guest DJ Pee Wee (you know, Anderson .Paak) to close out the evening.