What if there was a Startup Weekend for music? Let me back up a second, then explain.
First off, what is Startup Weekend? Basically, a bunch of people get together for a weekend, pitch business ideas and form teams. Over the weekend, they refine the business plan by contacting customers and producing a prototype. On Sunday night, judges and the other attendees pick the business (team) with the most promise.
I love music. I occasionally experiment with playing guitar, writing lyrics, recording, and remixing songs on my laptop. 10 years ago, I managed to write and complete about 10 songs. Since then I’ve fallen off, and rarely do anything.
From my friends that have actually been in bands, I’ve heard that it is hard to find band members (especially those you work well with). It’s hard to co-ordinate practice time. And of course, it’s hard to make enough money to make music more than a hobby.
So, what if there was a Startup Weekend for music? On Friday night, everyone shows up at a venue, pitches ideas for songs. Then they find band members and knock out a demo track over 12-48 hours. At the end of the weekend, all the songs are played for the judges and audience to pick a winner.
My pitch might be…
“I’ve got some lyrics and a basic melody for a radiohead-sounding song. I’m good at laptop recording, but I’d like to work with a real guitarist, bass player, and maybe a female vocalist.”
Of course not everybody pitches a song idea, some are just there contribute and meet people. Those that do pitch must then recruit others to join their “band.”
One issue is experience and talent level. With Startup Weekend, this seems to work itself out nicely. Experienced players take on the big tasks, and less-experienced team-mates help however they can. Another issues a space to host this (presumably very load) event. Perhaps practice rooms at a local college would work.
I think the most important premise of StartupWeekend is the willingness to share ideas. With sharing as a premise, finding people to work with falls together easily.
What do you think? I’m not looking to host one of these just yet, by the way, but I’m hoping someone else will!