Austin music scene icon stepping down

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Wednesday night marks the end of an era in the Austin music scene.

Margaret  Moser is retiring after 32 years as director of the Austin Music Awards.

“Bittersweet is the right word for tonight,” she said. “In many ways I’m really sorry that it’s happening. In other ways I really do feel the show has come to a point where it needs a little bit of a change.

“It’s mostly driven by the fact that Austin’s music is changing so tremendously. People don’t get their music just by going out to clubs anymore, going to the record store and picking up whatever. They get it in so many different ways, including from programs like NBC’s The Voice.”

Moser says she will miss the personal relationships she has forged over the years.

“A lot of the heart of the Music Awards has always been in the composers as well as the performers.”

She recalls 2012 as one of her favorite years. Music legend Bruce Springsteen came to Austin after many behind the scenes maneuvers orchestrated by Moser.

“We kept getting the notion that, ‘maybe it’s going to happen, maybe it’s going to happen.’ By golly it did!”

Moser was also surprised to see a picture taken of her at an Austin nightclub in 1980 was chosen as the cover photo of this week’s print edition of the Austin Chronicle, a place she has worked since their prototype issue was released in 1981.

Recalling the formative early years of the weekly publication Moser mused, “We were lucky to be able to cash our paychecks every two weeks in the early days.”

Moser says will remain active in the music industry, and is looking forward to helping develop teen bands.

“I couldn’t have asked for a better life or a better career or better people to work with, or a better town to be in to live the dream I didn’t even know I had until it became very real,” she said, “and that’s what Austin is all about.”

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