All musical artists, whether bedroom singer-songwriter or pop sensation, want to connect with fans around the world.
Though the web initially made it much easier to get word of music to those thousands of miles away, actually playing it live to these lovers of your art has proven elusive. A cursory glance of any artist’s Myspace page or message board will testify to this, littered as they are with requests to play to a couple of folks in Helsinki and their lone (but obsessive) fan in New Zealand.
The beauty of ever-expanding bandwidths and reliable high speed connections, however, means that the days of saying “We’d love to but…..” to some of your most enthusiastic advocates can be a thing of the past.
Sites like YouTube and Vimeo are excellent platforms for building a video marketing/promotion campaign but for live web casts there are other, lesser known sites that savvy artists are now using to engage with their fans, transforming geography from a barrier to a unique aspect of fan interaction during these performances. Any artist checking out uStream.TV or JustIn.TV will find a simple but effective platform from which to build a live event that can be attended by anyone with a reasonably quick and reliable connection.
Last weekend I watched New York based singer-songwriter Lucas Kane Hall play from his apartment to fans both here in the USA and all the way back in his native Australia. Gathering around a common factor – the live music – fans were able to discuss their location, post comments on the performance to each other in real time, and vote on their favorite songs of the set (a beautiful ode to nostalgia for a more innocent time, 1985, won, incidentally). Despite the distance, such events offer fans a chance to connect and form experience-based communities in similar ways to a live show. In actual fact, it could be said that this increases due to the nature of web interaction and the tendency of people to be more open to communicating via this medium.
We will cover the use of specific sites in more detail in future posts, as well as the wider phenomenon of creating video content to promote music online. For the moment, we would love to hear your opinion on these sites and the opportunities live video broadcasting presents.
Have you staged an event on one of these sites? What was your experience like and how did your fans react?
Do you see opportunities to take the concept further to promote your music to a global audience? What are your ideas?