Some Austin musicians got an early start on the SXSW Music Festival Tuesday evening.
Ray Benson of Asleep At The Wheel was surrounded by his friends Tuesday night at La Zona Rosa.
"Everybody says, 'What do you want for your birthday?' I said, 'What I want for my birthday is to play music with people that I love.' That's what I like to do," said Benson.
"It's a fun deal, a good cause and all that stuff," said musician Redd Volkaert. "Lots of great singers, and players."
But there was more to this birthday bash than met the eye. Joining in the birthday celebration was the legendary Texas Tornados, who just released their first album in 10 years.
"It's nice to be back," said band member Augie Meyers. "We never really left in spirit. We've always been here and this is a celebration, as Shawn said, of Doug Sahm and Freddy Fender, it's still the Texas Tornados.
Shawn is Shawn Sahm, son of Doug Sahm, a founding member of the group who died in 1999.
The Texas Tornados are just one of the hundreds of bands taking to 80 stages throughout Austin over the next five days for the SXSW Music Festival.
"I think it's great for everyone, for everybody that comes here from other places," said Volkaert. "They all get to enjoy that different variety of bands that come here."
"It's good for a lot of the up and coming bands," said Meyers. "They're all looking for a break and looking for a record company, which I hope they all get a break and get a contract," said Meyers.
"For the town it's a win-win," said Benson. "People come to town, people experience Austin, people see the great music scene that's here and the great community that's here and the film and interactive thing. It brings the business here, so we don't have to go to L.A. or New York to do so much of it."