If your town has any semblance of a live music scene, consider yourself one of the lucky ones. The live music market is struggling all over the State. Venues are closing, karaoke and cover bands are taking over, and less-than-ideal conditions are making it harder and harder for live music to sustain anywhere.
If you consider yourself a fan of original live music, here are a few items that help keep the scene alive.
5. Talk To The Bars You Visit
Usually bars that don’t feature live music are very hesitant to try it out. They think it is too hard to implement. More than likely, they have had live music before and something negative happened to put a bad taste in their mouth.
A lot of times, however, it’s simply because the patrons aren’t asking for it. The bar business is completely dependent on a customer-base.
They listen to what you want. If you (and about 10 of your friends) suggest live music to a manager or GM or owner, they are likely to take note. Persistence may be needed, but you can make it happen.
4. Numbers Matter
If you have a few favorite spots that have live music, always invite your friends. The number of people at a show is a really HUGE deal to the bar. I know it sounds pretty straight forward, but you’d be surprised how many people don’t get this concept.
It’s great that you come out and support the music, it really is (see number 1 on this list), but sooner or later if it’s just you showing up, the venue will not have a choice. Plan parties around your favorite band nights. If you have a weekly or monthly get together, do it at a live music joint. If someone wants to meet for drinks, always suggest the live music spot.
The more people you can get to show up, the more likely you are to keep your favorite live music venue. You can also convert a lot of non-music lovers this way, as well.
This might not be for everyone, but it’s important. If you are high up on the totem pole at your job, own your own business, or have any authority or persuasion over those that do…I am talking to you.
If you live in a town that has 3 or more live music venues, I guarantee you that you probably have a promoter somewhere nearby.
Promoters aren’t bad people. If they are doing their job right, they are the ones keeping the music scene alive, and in some cases well. Promoters are always coming up with ideas. They are constantly trying to find ways to bring in artists, promote live music, and keep it alive. Showcase shows, music series, festivals, etc. are all ways to highlight live music. These things take money.
If you happen to be in a situation that lends itself to helping, by all means you should do so. Promoters will always accept sponsorships. These sponsorships allow them to do more. More money equals more artists coming to town. Also, venues like to see sponsorships. It means a whole new market of customers just opened up. Also, you get advertising. Sponsorships are a big way to help the local music scene.
2. Stay Social Media-Friendly
In this day and age, most people have a Facebook page, Instagram profile, or a Twitter. I am not saying you have to go crazy, but staying in touch helps a lot.
Your favorite bar probably has one of these profiles as well (if not all 3.) Go like their page. It helps you stay connected to see what bands are playing. If you want to see live music stick around, then like the bar’s posts and SHARE them. Obviously, more people will see this and the chances of a bigger turnout increase.
It also gives you a chance to bring your favorite bands to town. By tagging a venue in a status with a band, the chances of the venue seeing it are pretty good. This might lead to a booking. Combine this with number 5 and it gets easier!
1. Go To A Show
I know I said in number 4 that the strength was in numbers (and it is), but the absolute worst thing you can do is complain about a live music scene while you do nothing. You have to go to the shows. You have to be a fan. You have to support the scene. It’s probably the easiest thing you can do and you get to listen to music.
If you claim to be a supporter of the music scene, you best be seen at a show. You could be the one who starts the movement. If not, you have no reason to complain.