Bright and early, coffee in hand – I showed up at the Hotel Kabuki on Tuesday, 10/9 for the SF Music Tech Conference. Some of my favorite moments from the first panel on Artist Tools:
David Dufresne from Bandzoogle talking about all the tools his platform provides – and why a website is the absolute only thing an artist can truly own on the internet. You can keep track of your fans, your analytics – you completely control the design and the narrative.
Matt Mason from BitTorrent explaining that its all about media format and how they want to facilitate sharing what you want with anyone you want. Dave Haynes from SoundCloud digs even deeper with teasing The Next SoundCloud – launching soon, which focuses not only on the creator, but also on the listener. Creating an even better→ Read more
Hear It Local announces GetBooked, a new app that helps musicians get booked for house concerts by fans right through Facebook.
There are so many amazingly talented musicians out there who are struggling to make a living playing the few music venues that are available in their area. And we know there are so many fans who would love to have awesome live music at their parties, or get a private concert played at their house by their favorite independent musician. The need is there on both sides, but there has never been a way to put the fans and musicians in direct contact and facilitate an easy booking process.
That’s why we developed GetBooked, which makes it easy for anyone to book live independent music. Musicians get great gigs that allow them to get paid for doing what they love and fans get an amazing music experience right in their homes, for→ Read more
Roem Baur is an operatically trained tenor and blues singer. The MAMA and Elly Award winning Artist, based in San Francisco, has played and recorded music all over the world, and is now in the studio recording his first full band album.
How many house concerts have you played? Hundreds. Strategically, it's the best way to grow a fanbase in a new town. Fans love it. We'll sell out a 50 person house concert a couple of times a year in SF so I can give them the show they first loved, the way we first connected, and have a lot of fun. It's loose. It's intimate. It's unpredictable. And it's a little more rock n' roll than most venues can allow, ironically enough.
Why do you like house concerts so much? House concerts did for me what social tech has done for the entire industry; a way→ Read more
The Family Crest is an orchestral indie collective based in San Francisco. Fusing rock, classical, folk, and jazz, the band’s versatile style has become a favorite of music lovers around the world.
How many house concerts have you played / do you play annually? I’d estimate that since we formed we’ve played over 100 house shows. We’ve done several projects that involved playing 20-30 house shows in a month, plus when we're on the road, we book house shows not only in the towns we're visiting, but in towns in between. It’s a great way to meet new people, spread the word about the band, and supplement our tour income.
Can you describe your experience getting booked through GetBooked? The booking process was extremely accessible. Because we are an independent band, we have a substantial→ Read more
Orange Avenue is an MTV-Buzzworthy pop-rock band from the shores of Daytona Beach, FL. Their latest release, “Small Victories,” debuted in the Top 15 of Billboard’s “Alternative New Album” charts and was nominated for “Album of the Year” by the American Association of Independent Music.
Tell us about your first house show booked through GetBooked: Our first house concert through GetBooked was a pretty special experience. We posted a quick message to our fans simply asking, “Does anyone want us to come play at their house?”
The response was overwhelming but one message in particular caught our attention. It was a private message from the sister of a fan. She told us about how much her sister loved the band and how big a fan she was. Unfortunately though, her sister suffers from a rare form→ Read more
Emily Rath is a 23-year-old contemporary pop/indie rock singer-songwriter based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her song "Get Out" from her new EP Afterglow was recently featured on San Francisco's premier 'World Class Rock' radio station, KFOG 104.5 for their Local Scene Month in August. She also won "Best Song" and "Best Performance" twice at the San Rafael and Berkeley Chapter West Coast Songwriter Competitions this past year.
Tell us about your first month on GetBooked: I'm actually a newcomer to the house concert scene, but I've been itching to get involved. Getting on GetBooked was obviously a good move for me since I was able to market myself for house concerts and get booked! In the first month I got booked for a corporate event and a backyard house concert.
Why→ Read more
There are many ways to organize a house concert, and Bay Area music pillar KC Turner has been producing his sit down concerts for over five years. As the gracious and generous dude he is, KC sat down with us and let us pick his brain about how he makes his shows so successful. KC has hosted luminaries like Matt the Electrician, John Vanderslice, Megan Slankard, Sean Hayes, Glen Phillips of Toad the Wet Sprocket, Bob Schneider, Ben Kweller, Peter Case and The Mother Hips. And coming up in 2012 he’s producing concerts with Nataly Dawn of Pomplamoose and Chuck Prophet. While he wouldn’t call these gatherings a “party”, KC makes a special effort to keep his shows laid back, social and fun so that they feel like communal, intimate experiences. Why do you like house shows? As a personal experience, they are more my speed. I→ Read more
House concerts are super fun. They are also a great way to play your music, make new fans and some cash, but booking your first one can be a little daunting. How do you find a home to play in?
Here are 10 tips for getting booked for a house show:
1) Send out emails to friends and fans who you think could be down to host. Or even, gasp! CALL THEM. Really it's all about word of mouth and getting the idea planted, you know, Inception style. Explain the house concert concept and ask that they recommend you to their friends if they can't host. Approach people who will be more likely to host. Do they have parties? Is their space appropriate?
2)→ Read more
Flutist, percussionist, and house concert enthusiast and vocalist Laura Bergmann is one of the six-piece orchestral indie-rock band, The Family Crest.
The Family Crest is having an exciting summer: recording a new album, opening for the Head and the Heart to a sold out Fillmore, playing at the Golden Gate Bridge 75th birthday firework extravaganza, and opening for OK Go at Stern Grove on August 26.
What's your most memorable house show ever played?
They're all memorable for different reasons, but I think our first house show is the most memorable for me. It was so much more intimate than the venue shows we had played. I remember being able to see the faces of people in the audience, and being excited and intimidated at the same time.
What’s the coolest alternative space→ Read more
We gathered at a friend’s house to watch Bay Area musician, Justin Ancheta, perform an intimate listening party. In this no-shoe household, it was a sock party with mocha crunch, a tabby cat and lots of good wine. Justin’s Latin/Reggae/Folk style of music was exactly what the foggy Saturday evening called for.→ Read more
People love to share. It’s built into us as human beings, hence why social media is so big (I REALLY want you to know about this sandwich I’m eating!) Something about feeling connected and being part of a bigger whole really motivates people. Live music is no exception to this. The DIY music scene that is growing around the country is built on this connectivity and shared experience. This camaraderie is one of the most exciting elements of playing house shows.
For a gigging musician, playing house shows offers a whole new environment for their fan base. I’ve always been the type of person to approach a band after seeing them play at a venue (no shame), but a lot of people feel intimidated. House concerts tear down that wall of separation, making you far more approachable. It gives you an opportunity to connect with your existing fans→ Read more
I met photographer Audra Marie Dewitt at a fundraiser for the Bay Area Girls Rock Camp where we BOTH played bass in a band called “Mama and the Tweets”. Inspired by Rock Camp, and the female musicians around us, an idea hatched: a book celebrating the can-do spirit of women in music who have stayed true to themselves and “followed their bliss” (A direct quote from Miho Hatori).
Three years later, the book is finished, and a kickstarter campaign is in process to help get the book to print. It features a variety of women, some are well known like Corin Tucker, Exene Cervenka, Amanda Palmer, Peaches, Corin Tucker of Sleater- Kinney and Miho Hatori. Some like Toody Cole, Jean Knight, Pamela Z are unsung heroes of their genres. The book also features a number of San Francisco based musicians including Megan Smith of Misner & Smith→ Read more
Today performers are obligated to find new and creative ways to make ends meet as a career musician. We are finding that touring is one of the most vital sources of income. However, trekking around the country can be a budgetary nightmare for any band large or small. With the DIY music culture growing around the country, supplementing your tour with house shows (or even doing a house concert tour!) can help make ends meet. Here’s how:
DIY spaces want a good show, not a profit: Unlike an established venue, which is reliant on the money coming in from shows (and the bar sales associated with the shows), DIY spaces and house shows are not necessarily looking to turn a profit. Most traditional venues will give you a cut on the door, or if you’re lucky a percentage of the bar sales. There’s no guarantee→ Read more
Think like Amanda Palmer - follow her lead and demand that artists deserve respect of the financial kind.
At this moment there is no one more inspiring to the independent music industry than Amanda Palmer. Her recent Kickstarter project was ultimately supported by 24,883 backers and raised a grand total of $1,192,793: the highest grossing music project ever on Kickstarter.
How did she get here? Palmer wielded the power of the internet early on and figured out how to cut out the middleman. She left her record label long ago and has been working off her yoga-toned butt with a small staff. She plays intimate house concerts, collaborates with visual artists and other musicians, and enables her fans to feel that they not only support the creativity, but are also part of making it.
But first things first: Palmer demanded respect and→ Read more
So you want to host a house concert? That's great! House concerts are more than just your average party; they are an extraordinary way to enjoy the music you love with friends in an intimate setting. If you are new to the show hosting scene, here are some things to think about in helping you plan your event:
1. CONSIDER YOUR SPACE - Before you can even begin to start looking for bands to play your event, you need to know what you’re working with! Do you have a sprawling basement fit for a punk show or a living room ideal for solo acoustic artists? Are you planning on setting up a stage in your back yard, or are you planning on cramming everyone into a spare bathroom? (Hey, I’ve seen it done. For the record, you can fit a maximum of 15 people after you get the drummer in the bathtub…) Are you planning on having people sit or stand?
2.→ Read more