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Maintaining Culture: Instagram Page Documents SLO's Indie Music Scene

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Editor’s Note: This article first appeared on, the Cal Poly radio station’s website.

The red Solo Cup in the night sky is a familiar image for many music lovers in San Luis Obispo. This is @slo.underground’s profile picture. This account is an Instagram account dedicated to spreading information about his upcoming local house shows. This account is run by an anonymous Cal Poly sophomore who loves the SLO music scene deeply. The band sends out flyers and posters for her to post on her account. This allows you to reach a wider audience than you could with posters on campus.

@slo.underground has been attending house shows since freshman year, but her first time was at a Cal Poly Hammocking Club meeting. A local fan-favorite band, Couch Dog and her Kiwi Kannibal, were playing later that same night. Intrigued by her, she and her three other members decided to look things up after the meeting. Together, they put away their hammocks and put 4A on the show. She recalled being a little overwhelmed at first.

“When you go inside, you can see different people from different years interacting,” said @slo.underground. “And walking into the actual room where the band is playing is stressful but also very thrilling at the same time. Despite all the stress, you want to be a part of it.”

Despite the small size and heat, the atmosphere of the venue itself is full of energy, as if it were alive. @slo.underground’s experience was no exception. She was moshing and dancing the whole time, but she only stepped outside for some fresh air for a few moments. When night fell, she became reluctant to go out.

“I was the sweatiest I’ve ever been, but the most substantial I’ve ever been,” said @slo.underground. “From that moment on, I knew I would do it again.”

Little did she know how she would become entwined with the SLO music scene.

The account, which has a feed full of brightly colored, eye-catching posters promoting various house shows, has been promoted for about five months. It started with the sudden announcement that it had decided to close on It was a loss felt by the music scene community, especially @slo.underground. “At SLO I remember thinking that house he was going to lose the concert culture,” said @slo.underground. was the thread that connected music lovers across San Luis Obispo, connecting members of the community and providing a platform for local bands to join the scene. @slo.underground refused to see such a pivotal pillar disappear.

With a little encouragement from a friend, she decided to take the role. “For me, it’s always been about preserving culture above all else.”

Do you have any advice for students looking to enter the music scene?

“I think we have one of the most inclusive communities in SLO. It doesn’t matter what grade or major, everyone is just there to enjoy good music,” said @slo.underground.

San Luis Obispo’s music scene has given students the opportunity to not only hear music, but live it. Students can feel every note and lyric with their whole body. They can sing along with bands that are dedicated to their craft and become part of something bigger than themselves.

If Friday night is fast approaching and you want to go somewhere, don’t be afraid to check out @slo.underground. SLO’s wide variety of talents caters for every taste and ensures something for everyone. It may seem intimidating, but remember that the hardest part of every new experience begins. That’s it — this hidden heartbeat of SLO.

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