Each year, we recognize three talented acts for their successful use of the site, and the reviews and recommendations we’ve received from our host community. Touring is a difficult sport, and these acts have demonstrated not just talent, but persistence, kindness, and a willingness to go where the opportunities are. Congrats!
Photo by Jess Phillips. Listening Room Festival 2019.
When we started LRFest in 2012, it felt like a moonshot. I wanted to create a gathering to celebrate house concerts, and to create a music showcase opportunity in the middle of a profitable tour. This year, our six acts earned a total of $19,500 over 24 house concerts and a beautiful showcase. Most importantly, they created a base of friends, fans and potential gigs in Florida that will pay dividends for years to come.
As is the case with house concerts, the sweet, listening vibe and profitability are the obvious rewards that mask the more important developments of community and connection. On this front, each year, we see more hosts and fans travel to Tampa Bay area to attend shows and make new friendships. We see them cooperate for routing, lodging, and even for volunteer help at each other’s events. The festival community is creating a rich, cultural tapestry of music support in our region.
Our volunteer crew doubled this year, another sign of the health and impact of our festival. For me, the biggest thrill is the growing number of hosts and fans who travel to St. Petersburg for this event. They come from different cities, different states, and even different countries – to take in a music vacation filled with house concerts and time with their tribe.
We hope you’ll join us for this one-of-a-kind festival.
Once in a while, we get a report that a house concert has had trouble with zoning violations. Zoning laws can cite various reasons why a house concert could be in violation – parking, noise, and commercial activity are the most common.
In the case of Crib Concerts, the complaint is about “Indoor Entertainment,” and specifically because it has been deemed a commercial activity by the local zoning Community Inspector. Unfortunately for Chris Devine, he lives and operates his concerts in a redevelopment district of Herndon that has even more restrictions than the city on property use.
The host is appealing to the city, and we have to give serious kudos to him for honoring the next 5 booked concerts. Since the issue will take months to resolve, Chris created a GoFundMe to cover the cost of the fines. That’s a fine example of commitment to artists, and engaging your community to rally for your cause.
One has to wonder how the complaint originated, but my money is always on someone like this guy.
I’m guessing Mr. Morningwood has never been to a house concert. What do you think?
Last October, we embarked on a massive job of re-creating all our websites (Listening Room Festival, Listening Room Network, and ConcertsInYourHome) to deliver you a more stable and attractive platform to connect with your growing community.
Here are some sketches of what we are preparing to launch!
Each year, we recognize three talented acts for their successful use of the site,and the reviews and recommendations we’ve received from our host community. Touring is a difficult sport, and these acts have demonstrated not just talent, but persistence, kindness, and a willingness to go where the opportunities are. Congrats!
2017 Artists of the Year!
These artists had a great year with us as well!
Rupert Wates, Danika & The Jeb, Matt Bednarsky, The Currys, Kelley McRae, Escaping Pavement, Woody Russell, and Brian Keith Wallen.
Note: Artists of the Year are not eligible to win for the following two years.
Great to hear from you. The typical questions we get about insurance have to do with liability e.g. if someone slips and falls on your property. I’ve never had someone ask about insurance that would be specifically about recouping damage to the home itself.
We have always discouraged hosts from keeping a percentage of donations, for a couple of reasons. One, to protect the culture of house concerts, which are an act of generosity. Enabling hosts to “cover expenses” is a slippery slope to acting like a commercial venue. We believe that house concert expenses are voluntary – you don’t have to provide booze, sound system, and catering… you can potluck, byob, and have artists bring what they need.
The second reason is legal. While there’s no case law on the matter*, we believe a host is on much firmer ground if 100% of donations go the artist. Anything else could suggest commercial activity in the home – which can violate homeowner’s insurance, zoning, and more.
On Wed, Jun 21, 2017 at 12:35 PM, Beth Fizell-Jenkins wrote:
Begin forwarded message:
I’ve been working with a friend to do some house concerts at her home. She had a problem with the last show we did – she had a faulty faucet that someone accidentaly left on, and the sink overflowed and caused about $10K worth of damage to her house. Unfortunately she had an issue with her homeowners – didn’t realize that her deductible was outrageously high, but she just renegotiated and now it’s just $1000 which is much more reasonable.
She’d like to continue doing concerts, but she wants to make sure she’s protected, and she doesn’t want to pay out of pocket for supplies. Is there any kind of protocol – any way to get affordable insurance for the shows? Alternatively, I was thinking the host takes like 5 or 10% from the door of each show to fund an escrow account that the host can use to cover supplies, to cover damage or insurance, or to help pay expenses related to the concert series, that aren’t necessarily directly related to that night’s performance. Do you know anybody doing something like that?
When I ran shows, we always just paid the expenses out of pocket, but she’s a little concerned, and after the water damage issue she’s even more concerned. Wanted to get your thoughts on it.
We're thrilled to announce the final results of the 2nd Annual 2010 CIYH Video/Tour Contest. This year's winner, from Etobicoke Ontario, is Suzie Vinnick !! In a virtual tie for second place are the duo Barnaby Bright (Brooklyn NY) and the trio Big Wide Grin (Mill Valley CA). Photos above are linked to their CIYH profiles.
The final round highlights:
45 CIYH hosts viewed all 30 song submissions from our 10 finalists for the final round of judging. The results were very close. All contestants garnered praise from many judges for their songs.
As our contest winners, Suzie, Becky & Nathan (Barnaby Bright) and Elaine, Lawrence & Karl (Big Wide Grin) will receive 5 and 10 gig circuits in the U.S. or Canada during May 2011. Circuit locations will be selected by January 31. (See full list of prizes below.)
and you can email jeff to add yourself as an interested host for a show in May.
Visit the link and hear these wonderful artists, then let Jeff know where you are!
to all of our artist entrants who collectively brought 220 videos to the first round of judging. Similarly, we thank each of the 80 judges who worked with us over the course of the contest, tirelessly and (based on their gushing comments) quite enjoyably.
The judges saw remarkable new talent well beyond the finalists, and some have said they look forward to booking these artists in the future. Of course, we'd love to know when that happens.
Thanks to each of you–artists and judges–for making the 2nd annual contest a great success.
Jeff and Fran
Tours and Prizes
Grand Prize: Suzie Vinnick Ten-day regional house concert tour $500 in merchandise from D'Addario & Planet Waves PLS Lighting System from Q-Lighting ($350 value) $100 cash.
Second place: Barnaby Bright Five-day tour $250 in merchandise from D'Addario & Planet Waves Maestro from Q-Lighting ($40 value) $100 cash.
Third place: Big Wide Grin Five-day tour $250 in merchandise from D'Addario & Planet Waves Maestro from Q-Lighting ($40 value) $100 cash.