SOFAR: living rooms for emerging artists

SOFAR “songs for rooms” is an amazing creative project that has been promoting a hundreds of music performers thanks to its secrets and intimate living room gigs, in more than 50 countries all over the world.

This innovative project was co-founded by Rafe Offer, David Alexander and Rocky Star in London in 2009. The main objective was to help their musician friends to increase their fans base showing their projects to a larger audience. But I think they never thought that this gigs would expand across boarders becoming viral thanks to social media enabling worldwide music lovers  discover new music.

Many people in big cities like  London, New York, Barcelona, Singapore, Melbourne, Buenos Aires, Mexico among others are becoming part of this movement helping indie music. All the concerts are filmed and the videos are uploading to the youtube channel or other platforms. Actually some of the concerts are broadcast live via Internet. This situation produces international exposure for all the music performers. Take a blink of the magic environment of one concert while enjoying this beautiful song of The Staves….”Winter trees”

There are some specific issues that make SOFAR concerts a unique experience. The date and the venue for the next gig are revealed just two days before it will take place. The line up remains in secret until the reunion officially starts. Therefore, it means that many people go to enjoy the experience of discover new music. In addition, to become part of one these gigs you must be registered into your local Sofarsounds going into the main web site sofarsounds.com  Then you would receive an invitation for the gig you must confirm your attendance. There are also some rules while performances are in process. Every body must be seated quiet, and cell phones must be in silence mode.

Although SOFAR was not created to make profit of it, therefore gigs are for free. Even though to produce the gigs and share it to the social networks some places are asking for some financial aid. Budgets to produce the  audio and video material, rent for the technological equipment, edition of music and film,  as well as payment for the crew are often expensive. Some local SOFAR´s producers do found raising based on a suggested donation going from $5 to $15 US dollars. But there are other channels of funding, for instance the producers of SOFAR Mexico are using the web site idea.me to involve the assistances in supporting collaboration. In other places producers of music industry are becoming sponsors of the gigs. Mainly because this events are a platform where they discover new music that often broke or publish for commercials, TV shows and films.

Sofar is expanding not only territorial but as a brand. Coming soon we will have “SOFAR plus” which consist in large audience concerts . There will be also the release of albums which collected the music played all over the world. In addition events like “one day festival” in N.Y. on May 2013 was a festival with more than twelve hours of music. It was created in an art space where musicians, poets, painters, dancers and photographers created a perfect blend of art and joy.

I personally find SOFAR as a new opportunity for the entire emerging artist that was searching new channels to release their music. Even more projects like SOFAR are changing the way we used to hear live music, the way producers discover music projects and how music lovers share and consume music.

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