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Study: Live Music Remains Top Draw For Austin Tourists

Photo by Jeff Heimsath for KUT
People watch Fleet Foxes perform at Stubb's in May. A new survey says live music is still the main reason why tourists visit Austin.

Don’t expect Austin tourism officials to drop the “Live Music Capitol of the World” moniker anytime soon.

A new survey indicates music is still the number one magnet luring tourists to the city.

More than 77 percent of respondents said they “Strongly Agree” that Austin is a destination to enjoy live music, the most positive response of any category. If you include those who “Agree”, the number leaps to 94.2 percent.

Other top responses included enjoying nightlife, seeing performing arts and attending special events, all categories that overlap with live music.

But a major problem, according to local tourism officials, is that people don’t always know how to find the live music that suits their tastes once they get here.

“We have a lot of room for improvement,” Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau’s director of music marketing Rose Reyes told KUT News. She said they are looking at ways to improve printed guides, online information and their social media efforts.

“Is Sixth Street for them? Is South Congress for them? Are they better off in a honky-tonk on South Lamar?” she said. “What is right for them and how can we help them figure that out? That’s something that’s going to be a big focus this year.”

The survey results are contained in the 2010-2011 Austin Visitor Inquiry Study, led by University of Houston researcher Jason Draper.

Nathan Bernier is the transportation reporter at KUT. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on Twitter @KUTnathan.