One of the staples of weekend night life is heading out to the local bar or club for some live music. While the appeal of live music has remained strong, the challenge of booking acts to play at the venues, and the tasks of keeping bands playing has changed dramatically.
One of the main reasons for this is the rapid growth of the internet as a tool for music creation. More and more bands are popping up and creating music entirely online. With more bands available, comes more pressure to keep bands booked, while simultaneously running a restaurant and bar!
The Good Life Bar is a restaurant and live music venue on Kingston Street in Boston, and has been doing live music for over 8 years. Featuring a variety of genres from House, Techno, to Reggae and Party Jam music, the venue definitely caters to a wide variety of patrons.
Megan Madara is the marketing manager of Good Life Bar, and says that in the time she’s been there, the job has definitely changed.
“I do a lot of jobs” She says, “…promoting events, talent buying, sound production, talking to agents…” And on top of those, she often fills in other roles in the restaurant when they are short staffed. More or less, venue managers now need to be able to do everything, and talk to everybody. Tasks that used to be handled by dedicated people, are now added on to the task list of the venue managers.
While there are certainly challenges faced by venue managers, new challenges have also arisen for bands that are trying to get started. Megan agrees that the internet has led to a kind of “Market saturation”, and now there are many more bands fighting for gig opportunities. She goes on to say that because the techniques of networking and communication haven’t changed, existing lines of communication have become too noisy.
“The internet has made it challenging for them to find the right gig” Megan says, “The industry has more or less stayed the same networking wise, so its tough for new people”
The question remains, what would help solve these issues? and what would make the jobs of venue managers easier while at the same time help new bands get noticed.
Megan says it’s all about contact, and making it easy to build relationships. “A direct line of communication…” would make the whole process more streamlined, help bands expand their network, and would certainly chip away at the mountain of tasks venue managers have to perform.
As for the future of live music, Megan sees nothing but success for Good Life. “We have a niche, and that’s cool people, playing cool music. Electronic is booming, and we’re always looking for new people, It’s all about putting your ear to the ground.”
The Good Life is located at 28 Kingston Street in Boston, and has the following DJs playing this week, Be sure to go check them out!
Thursday: 8/21/14: DUBCO PRESENTS SONAR Hunt for the Breeze, AOBeats, Nick Garcia
Friday: 8/22/14: PICO PICANTE DJ Dayglow, Riobama, Slick Vick, Bianca Oblivion
Saturday: 8/23/14: FRESH PRODUCE The Arcitype, Mr. Fritz, DJ Knife, DJ Tommee
– Keith Maxwell