I have played in bands for over a decade and one thing is for sure, most of the time it's hard to know whether you're actually making a connection with your audience or not. The bar is loud, the lights are bright, and more often than not, any attempt to speak is met by blank eyes because no one in the audience can understand what you're saying. This is particularly disappointing when you have a hilarious joke or poignant story to tell, which I almost always do.
The Listening Room was born out of a desire for musicians to be heard.
We started hosting these shows at Mercury Studio over three years ago and have had the good fortune to book amazing acts like Beauty World, Curtis Eller, Brett Harris, Toon & The Real Laww, Tom Maxwell, Melissa Swingle, Blanko Basnet, David Wimbish, Hammer No More The Fingers, Dex Romwebber, Jason Kutchma, and Lowland Hum. That's not even the whole list! (Click here for videos.)
The shows were small, seated, BYOB, and SO much fun. Part of the fun was that, because of the audience participation, and the space for the musicians to answer questions and tell stories, we never quite knew what was going to happen. Every event was created by the artist and the audience, together.
Fast forward a couple of years to 2015. The Listening Room team (my little brother, Steven, and me) was becoming over-extended and I was becoming increasingly frustrated that we weren't able to do more with the event. I wanted to book an excellent act every single month. I wanted every show to sell out. I wanted to create beautiful media at each event that the artist could have and that we could use to show everyone how awesome these events are. These are difficult things to accomplish with an over-extended team of two.
We took a break.
But now we're back AND we have a a whole new team full of talent and enthusiasm:
Ismail "Ish" Abdelkhalek - filmmaker
Greg Abate - audio engineer
Steven DeConto - production/hospitality
Steve Anderson - marketing/booking
Megan Jones - set design
Justin Cook - photographer
Katie DeConto - writing lots of emails and this blog post
If you're not convinced of the power of this team, check out this promo we just released (shout out to Mailande Moran for her outstanding vocal support!):
I AM SO EXCITED. The Listening Room is finally getting the attention it deserves and we've already booked four shows for 2016, including our kickoff event with Django Haskins of Old Ceremony on March 18th. Later this year we'll hear Sumner James (debut album release!), Kamara Thomas, Jack The Radio, and Katelyn Read (tickets for sale soon). CLICK HERE for more info on these shows, to purchase tickets, and/or to join our mailing list.
Want an insider tip? SPACE IS LIMITED. Seriously. We can only fit about 40 people into the Back Room and so if you wait too long, we might have to turn you away, which would be sad. Get your tickets now and we'll see you on March 18th!