The "Uber of Live Music" will charge you $1100-1600 to book a house show, pay musicians $100

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The “Uber of Live Music”

Sent shivers down my spine it did.


More shivers than buying through Ticketmaster?


I’d like to think that a service which takes 90% of the revenue and provides nothing of value won’t take off. I’d like to think that.


I have no Master!


Eh, musicians aren’t stupid. If they are at the point on the food chain where this makes sense, then fine. Serious professionals won’t take this seriously.

The point (IMHO) of a house concert is the intimacy. Putting an uber-like company in between you and the group you want to be intimate with seems stupid. Just hire the band you want directly.

Or most likely this will be just like the referral service some union locals have- and they are pretty useless because people already have their ways of finding the musicians they like, and it usually doesn’t involve calling a union or an Uber and saying yeah send me whoever.

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I have a friend who for years regularly toured doing almost nothing but house shows. He did OK just by passing a hat at the end of the night (or having whoever lives there take donations at the door.) Now he’s graduated to mostly small bars/etc, but to fill out a full tour you will still see “Columbus OH, Jen’s House” on the tour schedule. He always has LPs to sell, and he lives cheaply on tour, so he typically comes back with enough money to coast on until he can get another day job between tours. These guys are way behind the times, thanks to the internet and social media musicians can do this without the “help” of their predatory service, and fans can contact smaller artists themselves and book a show at their house.


I thought that meant $100 per muscian, which didn’t sound too bad, but it’s per band :open_mouth:

Sofar pays just $100 per band for a 25 minute set, which can work out to just $8 per musician per hour or less.

And sometimes not even that:

The startup has previously declined to pay first-time Sofar performers, instead providing them a “high-quality” video recording of their gig.

WTF? The entire band share less than 10% of the booking fee? And the Sofar keeps everything else because they pay for nothing???

This isn’t the Uber of of Live Music, its more like the Elsevier.


But…just think of the exposure…


Seems like this will straight up fail?


Before everyone had record players, musicians playing living room gigs was a common occurrence. Some musicians didn’t want to record, because they thought it would destroy their livelihood. So of course, eventually the recording industry did destroy their livelihoods, but now these guys want to take away their last refuge–being paid directly by the audience for live music. What’s next? Uber for street buskers?


You’d think, but they’ve already supposedly had 1,000,000 live audience members over 20,000 house concert gigs. I wouldn’t have thought such a thing possible for such an exploitative business model. What was I thinking? Exploitative music booking business x exploitative gig economy tech startup == marriage made in heaven for VCs/exploitation.


Is your body aching all the time, by any chance?


I refuse to believe that slimy exploitative scumbags like this can ever prosper in the wholesome music industry.


What? And quit show business?!

See also this article right here on BB:

Now, tell me you can actually repeat your statement.


JFC, just no!

Join the union instead, girls, boys, and gentlenbies. Get paid what you’re worth.


I know right. My rent has gone up 100 exposures in the last year


Yeah, I don’t get the concept. I’ve hired a couple of bands, and in each case just approached them after a show to gauge their interest. We paid them a bit more than a typical gig, supplied them with food and drink, and a grand time was had by all. A reasonable space to set up in and enough power cords were the only real logistics involved. I would think it’s pretty easy to deal with any out of town band directly, and try to coordinate with them when they plan to be in your area. If they have an agent, then just work it out with them. I hope this company tanks.


It’s amazing that the music industry has been nothing but a swindle for its entire existence. Bad deals for musicians and groups, but sweet contract caveats have been the norm for over 100 years. When does this shit-show get disrupted, but in the right way?


Union or not, you’re still going to have to work out how you’re getting paid “what you’re worth” on your own. All they can do is set minimum rates and help out if someone violates the contract. But you will still not have as much power as your customer.

The only difference is that if there isn’t enough union scale work for you to eat, they’ll try to ruin you for daring to try not to starve.

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