SXSW

Thecomeupshow Uploaded by MyCanon (Snoop Dogg) / CC

AUSTIN — A Texas trooper has sued his bosses after being reprimanded over his photo with rapper Snoop Dogg at South by Southwest.

Department of Public Safety Trooper Billy Spears filed the civil lawsuit Wednesday, alleging retaliation by DPS, Director Steven McCraw, and several executives.

The lawsuit says Spears was working off-duty security when an assistant for Snoop Dogg took the photo in March and posted it on Instagram. Spears was reprimanded because the rapper has several drug-possession convictions. Spears is seeking unspecified damages and a jury trial.

Spears also alleges retaliation for his complaint against a Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission officer. Spears was detained in 2014 while off-duty and carrying an alcoholic beverage at a concert.

Courtesy photo

Although it’s been a couple of weeks since the South By Southwest Film Festival ended, I can’t stop thinking about Lamb. The film, based on the prize-winning novel by Bonnie Nadzam, is about David Lamb, an emotionally adrift middle-aged man who forms a curious friendship with Tommie, an 11-year-old girl, following the death of his father, and in the aftermath of his own divorce.

Nathan Cone

“I don’t think that Petting Zoo could have been shot anywhere except for San Antonio,” says Micah Magee, director of the new feature film that made its North American debut at Austin’s South By Southwest Film Festival. “It has a really unique culture.”

Petting Zoo is about a young, smart and hard-working high school senior from a lower class background. An unplanned pregnancy alters the course of her life. It’s a story line that Magee knows intimately.

The eyes of the pop music world are on Austin, Texas this week. Thousands of bands and fans have descended upon the city for the South by Southwest music festival. Austin is also home to its own music scene year-round — and one of its more unusual groups is tapping into a sound that has nothing to do with indie rock or hip-hop. They're called Riyaaz Qawwali.

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