JUKEBUS SESSIONS: Micro-Indie Concerts On The Road

Jukebus is an innovative project that consists of micro concerts performed by independent bands and singers inside public buses during a normal trip for the duration of one song. The concept is to change the conditions of the common users bringing them a unique and up-close, musical experience.  Furthermore, the concerts have an added value, which is the element of surprise. The concerts are not announced although social network followers may have some clues about them.

Valencia is the city with more musicians per capita within the Iberian Peninsula. It has several music conservatories and houses the prestigious Berklee College of Music within the City of Arts and Sciences. The blend of local regional music like flamenco and international genres such as classical, jazz, pop and rock produces a unique music environment.

The funders and producers of this project, Ricardo Boluda and Johnny Kutnowki were inspired by the “Black Cab” sessions in London, and “A Trolley Show” in San Diego. In the city of Valencia, this project is supported by the EMT (municipal transportation company) and bandness.com, which is an emerging online music platform. These combined efforts try to achieve two objectives: to help promote new artists and involve this beautiful city as a co-protagonist of a ride.

The concept is pretty simple. At any bus stop a group of musicians get on the bus followed by the crewmembers with video cameras. This is also remarkable because all the concerts are recorded and streamed on line through jukebus tv channel. It has created an interactive connection between users, fans, and social media followers who can relive, comment and like any concert. Take a look at this video “The lake song”-short version- by Red Buffalo, a Valencian indie-folk band:

These micro-concerts are mainly created for young people and therefore social media plays a very important role in its success. Bandness.com, the online platform supporter of Jukebus, was created by Quique Belenguer in order to promote indie bands and establish a better way to relate with music fans. Presently it has more than 1,000 bands in its catalogue. Jukebus is the company in charge of developing the social media, recording, and streaming of the micro concerts. Click the links and keep in touch by Facebook, Twitter, youtube/jukebustv.

The other main partner of the project is EMT.  Its goal is to enforce a fresh-young-dynamic image within the population related with the service it provides. But there is also a social objective; to promote new music taking advantage of the big number of musicians in the city.  Alberto Mendoza, EMT’s CEO, expressed the following during the project’s kick off:

“The bands selected will perform only original compositions in order to please all bus users.”

I think this is a great idea and huge opportunity to bring out new bands and performers. The music industry is changing everyday and it is becoming more difficult to be signed by a record label. New music needs and deserves to be heard. It feels so good to watch entities not related with music such as EMT collaborating with media companies in order to help indie artist and promote their music. Well done!

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