Many of you may be wondering, “What is a house concert? How will I recognize the signs that I might be having one? Are there any known treatments?” Relax. House concerts are among the most common forms of musical expression in a post-venue world. They’re a 3D interactive offline reality game in which players meet in a human dwelling space and make sounds at each other. Points are awarded for humor and charm. At the end of the night, players with the most points may score.*
*Scoring is neither guaranteed nor likely.
Here are answers to questions I’m frequently asked.
Q: Why are you doing this?
A: Just for fun. I’m a former performing songwriter who still loves hearing bands play in listening rooms and small venues where the audience is there more for the music than the social scene. A lot of those local venues have closed over the past few years, so my friends and I are doing what we can to create alternative venues in living rooms, yoga studios and wine tasting rooms.
Q: Is this a business? Are you a professional music promoter?
A: No. I do this for the love of music, not money.
Q: Who gets the audience donations?
A: 100% of the tip jar donations collected at the shows go directly to the pockets of the performers (who sometimes give a few bucks to reimburse the homeowner hosts for snacks).
Recently, I was surprised to learn that some of the new, major players in the house show scene don’t compensate the musicians who play their shows. To me, this goes totally against the tradition of house concerts. The fact that they don’t promote who will be at any given show just underscores their belief that their gimmick, their system, their platform is more important than the musicians. It reminds of that stat showing how many millions of plays an artist would have to get on Spotify to earn the average salary of a Spotify employee. Same with the iPhone. We value the machine that holds the music more than the human who created it.
Almost all of the hosts I’ve met volunteer their time and open their homes to support the musicians, the same people who’ve been struggling making to make any money from their recordings for the past 20 years. If we let corporations commodify the whole concept of community by taking over the house show scene, the musicians will suffer. Let’s not let that happen, yeah? I want to create a community that values the musicians first and foremost. Will you help me do that by coming to our shows and bringing your friends?
Q: Are these music parties open to the public?
A: These are invitation-only parties that take place in private homes, backyards, yoga studios, wine tasting rooms and sometimes on the beach. But anyone can request an invitation to attend by emailing me at drew[at]insidelands.org.
Q: Could you help me organize a music party at my place?
A: Yes, I love collaborating with other supporters of local music. Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s talk details, ok?
Q: How can I get invitations to these gatherings?
A: Just sign up on my mailing list with the form in the upper right hand corner of this page or email me at drew[at]insidelands.org and I’ll sign you up.