Quantcast
Austin City Limits Festival/Facebook

The 22nd annual Austin City Limits festival lineup is here, and it's got some gems that could make even the most anti-festv Austinite want to go.

Headlining this year's festival are Kendrick Lamar, Foo Fighters, Mumford & Sons, The Lumineers, Shania Twain (Weekend One only), Odesza, Alanis Morissette, and Hozier.

Also performing are The 1975 (Weekend Two only), Kali Uchis, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Maggie Rogers, Labrinth, Cigarettes After Sex, Niall Horan, Tove Lo, Thirty Seconds to Mars, and many, many more.

The two weekends of reverie will take place October 6-8 and October 13-15, 2023, at Zilker Park. Three-day tickets go on sale Tuesday, May 9, at noon via www.aclfestival.com. There are even layaway plans available, starting at $25 down. Plus as a new feature for 2023, all fees and shipping costs are included upfront, so there are no surprises when you go to the checkout.

The nine-stage event will also feature several Texas artists, including the aforementioned Cigarettes After Sex, Tanya Tucker, d4dv, and Randall King, and more. Some of the Austin-area artists include Asleep At The Wheel (one of the only constants at Austin City Limits from year to year), Ben Kweller, and Die Spitz, a gritty femme punk band making their ACL debut. A few more Texas artists play just one weekend: The Mars Volta and Jane Leo will play only for Weekend One, while Jimmy Vaughn and Tilt-A-Whirl Band and Penny & Sparrow play for Weekend Two only.

Also expected during the 2023 festival is its Bonus Tracks programming, with past appearances including Austin favorite Kate Waitzkin, so stay tuned for that announcement later this summer. Beloved event Austin Kiddie Limits will return for music fans ages 8 and under, with a full lineup and programming to be announced soon.

In addition to general admission tickets, 3-Day GA+ Tickets, 3-Day VIP and Platinum Tickets, and hotel packages are also available. VIP ticketholders will enjoy two private lounges with viewing decks for the two main stages, while Platinum guests have the best seats in the house with exclusive viewing at six stages.

GA ticketholders are also getting a new amenity for 2023. Instead of finding premium cocktails on the menu in select areas only, you'll now be able to order them on bar menus all throughout the festival.

Tickets for the 2023 ACL Festival can be found at www.aclfestival.com.

Spoon/Facebook

11 must-see artists at ACL Fest 2022 — from Texas and beyond

Music Notes

It’s game time for two weekends of good times by way of Austin City Limits Music Festival. Since you certainly already have a must-see list comprised of the bigger artists on the lineup, here’s some choice acts — from Austin and beyond.

Must-see acts from Austin

Spoon
No one really needs to be told to see one of Austin's best bands of all-time. However, just in case you were thinking about skipping them, be sure to note that their 2022 release, Lucifer on the Sofa, plays great in a live setting. You can see them both weekends of the fest on Saturday at 4pm on the Honda stage.

Adrian Quesada’s Boleros Psicodélicos
Adrian Quesada (of Black Pumas) recently put out a solo album, Boleros Psicodélicos, and you’ll be able to check out all of its Latin America-inspired psych ballads during weekend one of ACL. Catch his set on Saturday, October 8, at 2:15 pm on the Honda stage.

Darkbird
Vet rockers Darkbird were supposed to play ACL in 2021, but a weather delay nixed their set. Expect the band, which is fronted by the always-spirted Kelly Barnes, to take full advantage of the do-over. Their only appearance at the fest will be Sunday, October 9 at 1:15 pm on the BMI stage.

Eric Tessmer
After a couple decades of dutiful shredding around Austin, guitar great Eric Tessmer has finally found his way onto an ACL lineup. His sure-to-be explosive turn at the fest is a weekend one only experience – see it on Sunday, October 9, at 5 pm on the BMI stage.

Good Looks
Indie rock act Good Looks are responsible for Bummer Year, one of the better albums to come out of Austin in 2022, so of course you should have them on your ACL radar. Catch this weekend two-only band on Saturday, October 15, at 1pm on the Tito’s stage.

Urban Heat
Get your new wave/post punk fix via Urban Heat during weekend two of ACL. The buzzy act, who recently put out an EP titled Wellness, will perform on Sunday, October 16 at 3 pm on the BMI stage.

Other must-see acts

Muna
LA’s own Muna, who are signed to Phoebe Bridgers' Saddest Factory imprint, head into ACL on a wave of acclaim for their 2022 self-titled album. The pop act has just a weekend one set on Sunday, October 9, at 3 pm on the Barton Springs stage.

Dehd
Dehd’s Blue Skies is loaded with some of the catchiest indie rock tracks you’ll find on any album in 2022, and that’s reason enough to catch them at ACL. The Chicagoans play both weekends – look for them each Sunday at 1:15 pm on the T-Mobile stage.

Magdalena Bay
Synthpop act Magdalena Bay recently dropped a deluxe edition of their hit 2021 album, Mercurial World, and now they’ll put it on display at ACL. Catch the LA-based act both weekends of the fest on Sunday at 4 pm on the Tito’s stage.

Wet Leg
Wet Leg had quite a bit of buzz heading into this year’s SXSW and the fervor surrounding the British indie rockers has only increased with the release of their self-titled debut album, which includes the infectious single “Chaise Longue.” The band is a weekend two-only play, and their set is Friday, October 14 at 2:30 pm on the Honda stage.

Faye Webster
The dreamy, gentle sounds of singer/songwriter Faye Webster will be a treat in the middle of the afternoon at Zilker Park. Be sure to catch the Atlanta-based artist during her weekend two-only appearance on Sunday, October 16 at 3 pm on the Barton Springs stage. By the way, don’t be surprised if Webster and her bandmates engage in some sweet yo-yo action.

Photo courtesy of Origin Hotel Austin

The 10 best Austin hotels to book for a full ACL Fest experience this fall

Night Moves

Ready or not, Austin City Limits Festival is right around the corner, and hotels in Austin are booking up fast. The October event brings approximately 400,000 people to the city's Zilker Park over two weekends, many of whom have to make their way en masse to hotels, perhaps not knowing that P. Terry’s is a great move for a late-night snack well below festival prices.

As one might imagine, hotels around Austin offer ACL deals, but they’re not very well publicized. Frankly, they don’t need to be, because people will find them. And fast. There are two long, official lists of hotels with vacancy on the festival website, for plucky travelers who love to scroll.

For everyone else, here are 10 great hotels and deals to springboard the search, from budget finds to music industry favorites. Since rates are slippery with all the different room sizes and dates available, CultureMap compared the lowest prices from each hotel on the same four nights, and assigned a dollar-sign rating:

$ — $250 or less
$$ — up to $500
$$$ — up to $1,000
$$$$ — above $1,000

At the end of the day (literally), as long as a hotel is safe and comfortable, it’s auxiliary to the ACL experience. But why not have a little extra fun?

Hampton Inn — $
The lowest priced of the entire ACL-sanctioned list, the Hampton Inn at 4141 Governors Row in South Austin will likely still require a paid ride to Zilker Park, about seven miles away. But it’ll be worth it to save hundreds with a few exclusive rate offers remaining. Even if those run out, it’s a reasonable option that’s very close to South Congress. It’s a mile-and-a-half from Cosmic Coffee, an excellent place to wake up before a busy day.

Origin Hotel — $
Origin Hotel, a four-city boutique hotel that just opened in Austin's Mueller neighborhood in June of 2022, is offering a special ACL rate. This deal gives a great opportunity to stay somewhere buzzworthy and unique for roughly the same price as a status-quo national chain. Origin also contains an all-day diner called Blue Lacy, something a little hard to find in Austin. Almost six miles from Zilker, it’ll require a drive, but the more residential area will be a great escape near locally loved restaurants.

Colton House Hotel — $$
Colton House Hotel on South Congress, a new boutique hotel as of January 2021, makes a special offer for ACL guests of four nights, with one night at half off and free parking for anyone with tickets. In addition to its stylish, neutral rooms, the hotel maintains a private yoga studio, great for working on those hamstrings after lots of walking; Zilker Park is about a mile from end to end. Use promo code ACL2022 when booking online.

Hyatt Regency — $$
The closest of the official ACL partnerships is the Hyatt Regency at 208 Barton Springs Road. This is a straight shot to Zilker, with only about a mile-and-a-half of walking. With great views and accessibility to Auditorium Shores and all of downtown, this is a great option for guardians, partners, or friends coming along for the ride who haven’t bought a wristband or tickets every day.

Moxy Hotel — $$
Moxy Hotels have a fun, young vibe in their many locations, with smart, space-saving room designs that help keep prices relatively low for their downtown locations. This one at 2552 Guadalupe St. is just over three miles from Zilker, but because of its West Campus location, it’s very accessible to buses. Moxy doesn’t appear to offer any ACL discounts, but check-in comes with a free cocktail (and sometimes other perks).

Hotel Indigo — $$
Airbnb is not the only option for festival-going pet owners. ACL partner Hotel Indigo accepts pets of up to 50 pounds ($75) and is located on one of Austin’s busiest streets for nightlife Red River. This area is full of live music venues (great for a musical nightcap, which are sure to be raging during the festival), and the hotel is right next to one of Austin’s quintessential bars, Cheer Up Charlies. Intrepid festival-goers could technically walk the two-and-a-half miles to Zilker.

Kimpton Hotel Van Zandt — $$$
A special deal (weekends one and two) from the Kimpton Hotel Van Zandt combines a three-night stay with merch and two festival wristbands, for those who haven’t splurged on them yet ($2,850). Even if you have, the Rainey Street hotel is a unique place to extend the musical experience to the point of breaking sanity. Geraldine’s, the excellent rooftop restaurant and bar, has jazz brunches, a “record society,” daily guest artists, and monthly artists in residence.

Soho House — $$$
Don’t count this South Congress members-only option out yet — a Soho Friends membership ($14 per month or $130 per year) is much more affordable than the whole shebang, and allows visitors to book hotel rooms, bring guests, and save on dining and spa packages. Soho House’s ACL special includes welcome cocktails at the very cool Dante’s HiFi vinyl bar, plus a luxurious Sunday brunch for two. And just imagine the rainforest showers after a long day.

Hotel Zaza — $$$
This boutique hotel can offer something priceless during such a crowded time: mobility. Hotel Zaza’s free three-mile shuttle brings guests wherever they ask to go within its downtown radius. Between the ACL shuttle that stops on the same block as the hotel, and the hotel’s shuttle starting at 3 pm, guests may not have to pay for a rideshare throughout their entire trip. Visitors for three nights or more receive a percentage discount.

Hotel Saint Cecilia — $$$$
It doesn’t offer any ACL-specific deals, but it would be a crime not to mention this musical hotel for visitors who really want to commit to the bit. The famous Hotel Saint Cecilia, tucked behind South Congress, played host to the Foo Fighters during their 2015 headlining ACL run, who then recorded a five-track EP there. The rooms are music-themed and have Gibson guitars on loan. Even though there is no ACL discount, there are four-night and pre-booking deals.

Photo by Robin Harper

Marcus Mumford brings solo debut to Houston this fall

Mumford Sans Sons

When Mumford & Sons went from three sons to two back in March 2021, loyal fans of the folk rock band likely started to suspect the inevitable: Mumford & Sons has become just Mumford — for now, anyway.

Fans will get a chance to discover whether less is more in Marcus Mumford's debut solo album, (self-titled), which he will promote on his upcoming North American tour with stops in three Texas cities along the way.

Kicking off with two Colorado dates just three days after the album's release, the tour will include shows at The Wiltern in Los Angeles (September 30), Nashville's Ryman Auditorium (October 30), and the Beacon Theater in New York City (November 7).

In between those more historic venues, Mumford will make an appearance here at White Oak Music Hall in The Heights on October 10. He'll also perform at both weekends of ACL Fest in Austin (October 9 and 16) and at the Majestic Theater in Dallas on October 11.

Danielle Ponder is slated to support from September 19 through October 14, while The A’s will open from October 17 to November 10 (except October 30).

The Seated Fan Club ticket pre-sale began on Tuesday, July 26, at 10 am, but tickets go on sale to the general public on Friday, July 29, at 10 am. Houston show information can also be found at White Oak Music Hall online.

Produced by Blake Mills (Alabama Shakes, Jim James), (self-titled) includes features from Brandi Carlile, Phoebe Bridgers, Clairo, and Monica Martin. Mumford released the lead-off track, “Cannibal," in mid-July, along with an accompanying video directed by Steven Spielberg — the first music video for the famed Hollywood heavyweight.

Before these solo efforts, Mumford & Sons topped the Billboard 200 with three of its four studio albums. The band has won numerous awards, including a Grammy for Album of the Year (Babel) and Best Long Form Music Video, two Brit Awards, and an Ivor Novello award.

Photo by Daniel Cavazos

ACL Fest finally drops anticipated 2022 music lineup and 3-day tickets

one hot lineup

The day Texas music fans have been waiting for since last October is finally here: Headliners for the 2022 Austin City Limits Music Festival have been announced.

At the top of the ticket are Red Hot Chili Peppers, P!nk, The Chicks, Kacey Musgraves, SZA, Flume, Paramore, and Lil Nas X. Also performing are Phoenix (Weekend Two only), Diplo, ZHU, Lil Durk (Weekend One only), Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats, Billy Strings, James Blake (Weekend One only), Wallows, Jazmine Sullivan, Tobe Nwigwe, The War on Drugs, Spoon, and many more.

The two-weekends of reverie will take place October 7-9 and October 14-16, 2022, at Zilker Park. Three-day tickets go on sale Tuesday, May 10, at noon via www.aclfestival.com. There are even layaway plans available, starting at $25 down.

Known for mixing music legends and established icons with rising stars and hot new acts, the nine-stage event will once again feature a wide range of artists over the two weekends. Asleep at the Wheel, Joshua Ray Walker, Zach Bryan, and Charlotte Chardin will each play Weekend One only, while Wet Leg and Teezo Touchdown will only play Weekend Two. Several artists such as Sabrina Claudio, PinkPanthress, Spoon, and Tobe Nwigwe are set to play both weekends.

The festival is becoming as known for its extracurricular events as for the main headliners, and the 2022 programming for culture and connection will be no exception. Past appearances at Bonus Tracks have included Billie Eilish and Brené Brown, so stay tuned for that announcement later this summer. Beloved event Austin Kiddie Limits will return for music fans ages 8 and under, with a full lineup and programming to be announced soon.

In addition to general admission tickets, 3-Day GA+ Tickets, 3-Day VIP and Platinum Tickets, and hotel packages are also available. VIP ticketholders will enjoy two private lounges with viewing decks for the two main stages, while Platinum guests have the best seats in the house with exclusive viewing at six stages. One-day tickets will be available later this spring.

Photo by Shelley Neuman

ACL Music Festival releases anticipated 2021 lineup and 3-day tickets

MUSIC TO OUR EARS

Live music takes to the stage at Austin’s Zilker Park this fall as the Austin City Limits Music Festival returns to full capacity with its 20th anniversary music celebration, featuring a spectacular lineup of diverse artists ranging from George Strait to Stevie Nicks, Billie Eilish, and Megan Thee Stallion.

On Thursday, May 20, ACL Fest announced the lineup for the fall festival, which will take place in person across eight live music stages at Zilker Park over two weekends: October 1-3 and October 8-10. Three-day tickets go on sale May 20 at noon. Three-day GA+ tickets, three-day VIP and platinum tickets, as well as hotel packages are also available. One-day general admission tickets, one-day GA+ tickets, one-day VIP tickets, and one-day platinum tickets will be available in the coming months.

This year’s festival, headlined by legendary artists George Strait, Billie Eilish, Stevie Nicks, Miley Cyrus, Rufus Du Sol, DaBaby, and Erykah Badu, will also include standout talent like Modest Mouse, Phoebe Bridgers, Jack Harlow, Jon Pardi, Finneas, Chet Faker, Dermot Kennedy, Tierra Whack, Tanya Tucker, Omar Apollo, Trixie Mattel, and many more.

As one of Austin’s premiere music events, ACL Fest will also feature a wealth of local and Texas artists, including Black Pumas, St. Vincent, Marc Rebillet, Surfaces, Dayglow, Missio, Charley Crockett, Heartless Bastards, Asleep at the Wheel, Nané, Riders Against the Storm, Mike Melinoe, Deezie Brown, and more.

ACL Fest plans to announce additional acts soon. And not all artists will play both weekends, so it’s best to check the full lineup and performance dates on the festival website.

New this year to ACL Fest: VIP ticket holders can access two private lounges with viewing decks offering sight lines of the two main stages. Platinum ticket holders can snag seats with exclusive viewing at six stages. A full list of tickets amenities is available here. Kids 10 and younger get free admission when accompanied by a ticketed adult.

The return of the live festival, which was canceled last year in favor of an all-virtual event because of the coronavirus pandemic, is being approached with caution and much safety prep by city and health officials and ACL Fest organizers.

“Music is coming back strong to the Live Music Capital of the World,” Austin Mayor Steve Adler says about the festival in a release. “The return of Austin City Limits as an in-person festival celebrates that our efforts as a community to become vaccinated are working. Health and safety remain our top priority, and we will work closely with the organizers and Austin Public Health to ensure ACL Fest is in line with our health standards. We must continue to get everyone vaccinated and keep up our success.”

As the festival weekends approach, ACL Fest patrons will get regular updates with info about the event’s safety policies and procedures, which will also be shared at aclfestival.com and on social media. ACL Fest will partner with the City of Austin and Austin Public Health to encourage COVID-19 vaccinations in the months prior to the festival.

“Austin City Limits 2021 is a result of successful vaccine efforts and more than a year’s worth of protection measures,” says Dr. Mark Escott, Austin-Travis County interim health authority. “Taking the shot is our shot at getting things back to normal and we envision this happening before October if we stay the course as a community. Thank you to all those who have done their part and took the vaccine and to ACL, who will utilize their broad voice to encourage vaccination in the months leading to their monumental event.”

Zilker Park has been the home of the Austin City Limits Music Festival for two decades. Since 2006, ACL Festival, in partnership with Austin Parks Foundation, has generated more than $41 million for improvements to Zilker Park and parks throughout Austin. In 2019, ticket sales helped contribute $6 million to improving Austin’s public parks, trails, and green spaces. And even in 2020, the Austin Parks Foundation was able to employ ACL Fest funds to help complete 13 park-improvement projects.

Ad Placement 300x100
Ad Placement 300x600

CultureMap Emails are Awesome

Mega-celebrity photographer of Beyoncé's all-time favorite portrait holds court in Houston to honor Queen Bey

royal portraits

Only a select few humans — ever — have been photographed as often as pop culture’s undisputed queen, Beyoncé, over her illustrious, 26-year career. Even at her young age, Houston’s queen possesses a singular trait that elevates her above even the most apex celebrities: immortality.

Just how do the ultra-famous unlock the loftiest achievement of immortality? For many, it’s often through a single, transcendent photograph, which can transform a performer into an icon — and rocket a mere mortal into immortal status. And few photographers on the planet can bestow immortality on the globally famous like A-list artisan Markus Klinko.

To celebrate Beyoncé’s Renaissance World Tour homecoming — and his now legendary photos of her over the years — Klinko will meet fans from 1 pm to 3 pm Saturday, September 23 at Tootsies for a showcase of some of his most famed works — including the ultra-rare Beyoncé “Diamond Dust” series, on view at Nicole Longnecker Gallery.

A statuesque, towering presence (he’s six-foot-four) with chiseled features and a flair for fashion, the Swiss-born Klinko looks every part a celeb himself. That star quality has no doubt helped him break the ice when photographing superstars like our Beyoncé, David Bowie, Lady Gaga, Kim Kardashian, Jennifer Lopez, Will Smith, Britney Spears, Mariah Carey, Kanye West, Anne Hathaway, Kate Winslet, Naomi Campbell, and Iman — to name a few. Not a bad resume for a former professional classical harp soloist who — sort of amazingly — only fell into photography after a hand injury (more on that later).

Before she became a one-word brand, Beyoncé Knowles was just 22 when she experienced Klinko’s wizardry firsthand in 2003. Already drawing It Girl attention as a member of Destiny’s Child, the young Houstonian had met Klinko during a Destiny’s Child photo shoot for Vibe magazine in 2000. With his trademark, sixth-sense for superstardom, Klinko pointed to Beyoncé while she was lounging with the group and told her mother, Tina Knowles, “Her, she’s going to be huge.” Tina’s response: “We know.”

Three years later, Sony reunited Beyoncé and Klinko to shoot the cover of Dangerously in Love, Beyoncé’s now legendary 2003 debut solo album. The match, now, seems predestined: both Beyoncé and Knowles were in the early stages of their careers. Beyoncé and Klinko vibed immediately, and in a simple snap of his Fuji camera, Klinko shot the stunning and shimmering photo that Queen Bey recently told French newspaper Le Figaro is her most favorite of any portrait taken of her.

Staying true to his organic, in-the-moment approach, Klinko flawlessly captured Beyoncé’s effortless pose in her now-famed diamond top and created one of music’s most iconic celebrity photos and yes, helped cement Beyoncé’s immortal status. And it only cost him his pants. (More on that later, too.)

CultureMap caught up with Klinko ahead of his Houston appearance and fresh off the opening of his latest installation: His celebrity images are on display at the legendary Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino in, naturally, the vaunted Elvis Presley Suite. Perfect timing, then, for Klinko to star as a cover model in the familiar Tootsies window displays.

CultureMap: Congratulations on landing the Tootsies window display. It looks gorgeous.

Markus Klinko: Oh yeah, it’s spectacular, isn’t it?

CM: Quite! So, what’s it like seeing yourself as one of the main features of an exhibit — as opposed to being behind the camera?

MK: You know, I’ve never been in the window of a major fashion department store, so this is pretty fun.

CM: Never in the window, but you’ve certainly been the focal point of attention as an acclaimed harpist.

MK: Yes, I started my life on the ‘other’ side, and as you say, as a classical concert harpist. I was signed to EMI Classics and represented by Colombia Artists and traveling around the world making recordings. I was on television very often and on magazine covers and all that throughout my 20s and early 30s — everything from Italian Vogue and Vanity Fair and Harper’s Bazaar and GQ and all those fashion magazines for which I later worked as a photographer. So it’s not completely. new. But this is sort of a different twist.

CM: You clearly had an understanding of being in the spotlight, and the butterflies-in-the-stomach pressure to put on a great performance and give of yourself to an audience. Did that experience help you relate to your celebrity performer subjects in a way that just maybe a Mark Seliger or an Annie Leibovitz — not disparaging either — could not? Do you have a window into these performers’ worlds where they relate to you, and you to them?

MK: You know, that’s an amazing question and I’m glad you’re asking me this.

I switched from my classical music career, which was very successful at that time, to becoming a photographer at 33 under dramatic circumstances. It was tragic; basically a hand injury forced me to abandon my career at the height of my success in the summer of 1994.

I was forced to cancel recording sessions, touring engagements and all of that. I had no clue where my income would be coming from, so it was not like the happiest moment in my life. It was actually sort of a panic-stricken time.

CM: And then came the moment.

MK: Yes, I had this epiphany that I will become a fashion photographer, actually had no intention at all to ever become a celebrity photographer. In the beginning of my photo career, I was 100-percent interested only in shooting models — mainly female models to be honest. I would have liked to be a Playboy magazine photographer or something.

So in other words, I just wanted to have fun. It was the last thought on my mind to help other musicians succeed.

CM: You almost seem like you were dragged into fashion and celebrity photography.

MK: A few years into my photo career, around 1999, I was still completely focused on shooting models, models, models. I wasconfronted with proposals from record labels and magazines to shoot covers for them. And I distinctly remember telling my agent at the time that I was not interested and that why would I shoot musicians, when I could just shoot models who are more beautiful in general. And that was that.

CM: And how did that go over?

MK: At some point my agent picked up the phone and screamed at me and said, ‘Markus, you’re an idiot! We have record companies wanting to pay you $100,000 a day and you would rather shoot some girl.’ And I said, ‘Okay, fine, I’ll try it.’ My first record cover shoot was Vitamin C; at that moment she had the biggest hit of the year.

I asked my friends from Interview magazine to style it and she was lovely and I had no problem with it. But about a month later, I got up in the morning and I went to the gym. As I walked through the streets of New York, there were thousands and thousands of posters of Vitamin. I saw my image of Vitamin C a million times on the way to the gym. And I was like, ‘Hmm, that’s not so bad.’

A couple of months later, GQ called me from the UK and wanted me to shoot these different celebrities. And I told GQ — it was very funny — I said under one condition, I’ll shoot the celebrity you want me to shoot, but I want you to let me shoot some nude girl for the centerfold of GQ. And they just said, ‘Okay, whatever you want.’ So I invented the GQ Pin Up 2000 and for a whole year as a reward of shooting some British pop star girl for them — who I couldn’t care less but whatever, I did it. But then I shot Little Kim and Molly Sims and a bunch of really big models and supermodels.

CM: And then you shoot the world’s biggest supermodel, Iman, for her book, which leads to shooting a rock god David Bowie — her husband — for his now-famous album cover [Heathens, 2002] in 2001. Talk about a word-of-mouth reference.

MK: By that time, I was already inundated with. requests from labels. I shot nonstop for different labels and then Destiny’s Child, Beyoncé, Britney Spears, Mariah Carey, Mary J. Blige, Jennifer Lopez. That all came as a reaction basically to that first celebrity shoot with Vitamin C, and I guess just my style. The way I shot models was very different from what was in fashion at the time. I just sort of did my own thing. And that really appealed to major advertising record covers, iconic photo shoots, big comeback shoots for artists like Mariah. Mariah really needed a big comeback shoot in 2005 when she launched The Emancipation of Mimi.

CM: Let’s go back to that magical moment in 2003 when you shot perhaps the most legendary photo of Beyoncé ever.

MK: Sony music called me and they said, 'Beyonce from Destiny’s Child is going solo and she requested you shoot her album cover. Apparently, you had worked with her before for Destiny’s Child and she wanted to only work with you for this.'

So then, Sony Music organized a phone call between me, Beyoncé, the Sony team, and her mom Tina [Knowles] who was styling it. Beyoncé on the phone mentioned specifically my photograph of Leticia Costa, the French supermodel and actor in the "Spider Web" shot. And she said she really loved that photo — She called it the Diamond Spider or something. And she said she would love something like that, but smaller on her. And to be honest, I had no idea what that meant, but I was just like, 'Okay.'

Fast forward to a week later when the photo shoot actually happened and they arrived in the morning. I noticed that there was this diamond top and I grabbed it and I went up to Beyoncé. I said, 'This is exactly what you were talking about. We could do this.' And then she said, 'Oh yeah, I was thinking about it, but my mom has these skirts and I don’t wanna wear those because it reminds me of a prom and I don’t wanna look like a prom on my album cover.'

And I said, 'Yeah, of course not. Let’s do it with denim.' And then Beyonce said, 'No, we don’t have any, we didn’t bring any denim.'

CM: And then...?

MK: And so I said, 'Oh, don’t worry, maybe you’ll fit into mine.' And she said, 'Oh, really? Can I try them?' And so that’s the story.

CM: I’m guessing you had another pair handy?

MK: Oh, sure, I just grabbed another pair from upstairs I had. You know, back then and until now, my favorite pair of jeans are always DNG — Dolce & Gabbana.

CM: I love the story of how she returned them to you.

MK: She brought them back a couple months later. She had dry cleaned them and she packed them into some sort silk paper thing and a ribbon. She brought him back and said, 'Please don’t sell them on eBay, ever.' And she laughed.

I thought that was really sweet and I just took them and I put them somewhere. This is crazy, but I’m actually talking to Botswana Diamond Dealers to fill up a bathtub at the Vegas suite and to put those Beyoncé jeans into the bling bathtub as a joke. You know, almost as a shrine.

CM: Markus, it certainly seems to me that right when you looked through the viewer and fired off that exposure, she went from Beyoncé Knowles from Houston, Texas to the immoral global brand all in one second.

MK: You are right, yes. Absolutely she did. I had a jolt in my, in my whole body when that moment happened. And I told her that right then as soon as I clicked that shot. I said, 'We got the cover, you’ll see.' There's alternate shots of that, which are all beautiful, and some of them will be in Houston.

CM: It seems you predicted her future while announcing her to the world. Is that fair to say?

MK: Well, the way I see it is with that image, I sort of anticipated who Beyoncé was going to become. I think that my job that day was to take a young girl from Houston, Texas, a member of an R&B group, and present to the world who she will be. And she would have become that regardless of whatever I did photographically, because she’s such an enormous, enormously talented musician and performer and icon. She’s a great actress. But, my opportunity was to showcase to the world quickly and immediately who she will be. And so that’s what I’m proud of.

CM: You have shot countless celebrity portraits — many the most memorable of said celebrity, like Britney Spears. How does it feel to hear that your 2003 shot is Queen Bey’s favorite of all time?

MK: The fact that Beyoncé is probably the biggest celebrity in the world today, and having photographed the most famous photo — of the most famous celebrity — is an honor that I take with great humility. I’m not saying that to show off — I’m saying that to thank God for the opportunity. I am glad that Beyoncé loves the photo so much. I’m glad that the world recognizes it as her most famous photo: It's been said many, many times that it is the most recognizable Beyoncé photo. So I'm very honored that people feel that way about it.

CM: What do you remember of the Beyoncé then, and the Beyoncé you've worked with since for other projects?

MK: I remember Beyoncé and being around her, seeing her as an extremely kind, very humble, very normal person. I’ve never felt any sort of diva behavior from her. Beyoncé was just really, really nice and normal. And she’s extremely hardworking, obviously extremely talented, not just with music and singing and acting, but also in the process of collaboration of a visual product such as these photographs I’ve done with her. She’s a very, very good collaborator.

There are people who are very famous, especially actors who sometimes, in front of the still camera, feel awkward. Sometimes comedians and actors need the movement, the momentum, the storytelling, the words in order to showcase their brilliance and their talent.

Not everyone is able in a 2/50th of a second to express all of that, but Beyoncé certainly has that incredible ability and I think that’s innate and subconscious and subliminal. She just knows where the light is coming from and she knows how to position it all in the most phenomenal way. And I guess I subliminally know how to catch it. So it’s really one of those very, very easy collaborations.

CM: Speaking of collaborations, you are able to crystallize a pop icon’s entire era in a single exposure unlike perhaps anyone I’ve ever seen. Did you know that Beyoncé, Megan Thee Stallion, and Lizzo are all from Houston — they all grew up just a mere 30 minutes from each other.

MK: Wow, I did not know that.

CM: Yes, we’re home to three of the biggest female pop stars in the world. So I wonder: Megan Thee Stallion is truly in the midst of her moment. Is she someone you’d like to shoot next?

MK: Well, let me answer it this way...I hope that Megan reads your interview, because I absolutely love Megan and I would love to work with her — and they should call me. I love her.

CM: I would be remiss if I didn’t ask: What is your favorite Beyoncé song?

MK: Oh, I would say “Crazy In Love” is one of my favorites. There are obviously many, but I'm probably biased to that album. That's one of my proudest collaborations, so, of course, I’m biased. Can you blame me? [Laughs]

Courtesy of Markus Klinko

TKTK

Courtesy of Markus Klinko

TKTK

Courtesy of Markus Klinko

TKTK

Beyonc\u00e9 Dangerously in Love

Courtesy of Markus Klinko

Markus Klinko captured Beyoncé's favorite portrait in 2003 for her Dangerously in Love debut solo album.

Courtesy of Markus Klinko



TKTK

Countdown to Beyoncé: Trill Burgers shortens hours to serve massive NRG Stadium crowd

respect the beyhive

Since it opened in June, Trill Burgers has been unstoppable. Bun B’s burger joint has seen lines out the door, fed celebrities ranging from Drake to Mike Tyson, and caused literal traffic jams with its drive-thru.

But even a juggernaut like Trill Burgers knows better than to mess with the Beyhive. For this weekend only (September 23 and 24), the Montrose-area restaurant will only be open from 11 am to 2 pm. Operating with such limited hours will allow Trill Burgers to feed the sold out crowds flocking to NRG Stadium for Beyoncé’s Renaissance Tour.

“We want to make sure that we have our stations fully stocked so that people don't miss this amazing show that she's bringing,” Bun said in a video posted to social media. “We know the Beyhive don't play and Trill Burgers don't play either.”

In order to ensure people get their burgers as quickly as possible, Trill Burgers is slimming down its menu to only serve beef burgers — sorry, vegans. In addition, it will impose a limit of two burgers per person.

Due to the stage setup, Trill Burgers will only operate two of its usual four stands. They are Sections 135 and 548.

Of course, CultureMap has you covered for everything related to this weekend’s concerts. Don’t miss our guides for what to wear, events celebrating Beyoncé, and the latest traffic and parking info.

Countdown to Beyoncé: Parking, closures, rideshares, and more for NRG Stadium

bey prepared

The countdown is on for Beyoncé's highly anticipated shows in Houston this weekend, and ABC13 has everything you need to know for an easy ride over to NRG Stadium to see Queen Bey.

This weekend's gridlock alert isn't like any other, as more traffic is anticipated than usual in the South Loop area towards the venue on both Saturday and Sunday.

Here's what you need to know:

Parking

Drivers, if you decide to park directly at NRG Stadium, know all lots will have $40 cashless parking.

Parking is available in the orange, red, maroon, blue, yellow, green and purple lots. ADA parking is available in all of the lots.

If you're getting a ride, you can get dropped off and picked up at the Yellow Lot. The entrance will be through Gate 16B off Main Street.

METRORail riders can take the Red Line from the Fannin South Lot, which has $20 parking, and get off at the Stadium Park/Astrodome Station exit.EMBED <>MORE VIDEOS

Ready to Renaissance? Here's what you should know before Queen Bey's Houston concerts.

SEE ALSO: Beyoncé's favorite things: 9 places star has stopped before in Houston

Traffic

But what about getting there on time?

If you're driving in from Fort Bend County or the southwest side, the Southwest Freeway will be closed at the West Loop, so you might want to avoid that.

All mainlanes will be closed starting Friday at 8 p.m. to Monday at 5 a.m. You can use US-90 as your alternate route.

For those coming from the east side, including San Jacinto and all points beyond that along the East Freeway, avoid the East Loop altogether.

You'll see northbound and southbound closures between Market and Clinton Street from 9 p.m. on Friday to 5 a.m. on Sunday.

So, for Saturday night's concert, you can drive toward downtown and south on Highway 288 to catch the West Loop over to NRG Stadium.

If you plan to use METRO to head to NRG, they plan to put more of their trains in service about three hours before the start of Beyoncé's concerts each day.

-----

Continue reading this story on our news partner ABC13.