Host a House Concert!

by | Jul 16, 2016

The growing House Concert movement brings live music back into our homes by connecting performers with listeners in a friendly, respectful setting. It’s a concert just like you would find in a club or theater, but held in a friend’s living room or back yard.

House Concerts occur because everyone pitches in. Someone offers their home as a venue; guests make a donation at the door; the performers bring their music. It’s a very simple formula, but it often leads to magical moments that are hard to forget.

What better way to enjoy the music of Maria Volonte than by having her perform in your own home.
These days, house concerts are becoming a very popular way for music lovers to hear their favorite artists up close and personal and to introduce their friends to them as well.

House concerts are also an excellent way to support the artists you love by providing a venue for them to perform (we all need more live music, don’t we?) and by giving them the tangible support require to continue making their music. But unlike a private party where you hire the band to play and pay for it out of your own pocket, a house concert is organized around the principle that everyone who comes to hear the music chips in. (And we all know that sharing is good, right?)

How the Artists Get Paid
The most common way of paying for a house concert is to have everyone who comes make a donation at the door. This doesn’t have to be complicated: it can be as simple as putting a box on a table by the door with a sign and letting people make their donation when they come in. Let people know they should bring cash and exact change.

We often play for groups of 30 to 40 people (we need a minimum of 20 people), but sometimes the groups have been as large as 100 people. The suggested contribution for these intimate, private concerts is $20-$25 per person. It’s important to let people know this ahead of time when you invite them to your house concert, so there’s no confusion and to let them know that this is not a fee you are charging but rather a voluntary donation to support the artists on tour.

Hot Tip: Put a box (or a bucket or an envelop) on a table by the door in which people can place their contribution. Have a sheet of paper beside it where everyone writes their name and how much they put in. This makes accounting at the end of the night a snap.

[Occasionally, the organizer of a house concert chooses to pay for the concert out of their own pocket. If you are in condition to do this and prefer this approach, we can just set a fee for the concert based on how many people come. Again, we need a minimum of 20 people.]

However, a house concert made possible because everyone chips in is a wonderful thing and helps to build community. It’s amazing the things that are possible when we all work together.

Organizing a house concert is easy and fun:
1) Book the artist & set the date
2) Tell your friends (Ask them to RSVP, so you know what to expect).
3) People often prepare some food for their friends… but it can also be potluck
4) Get ready to have fun!
*To avoid running afoul of local regulations, it’s important to make clear that this is 1) a private event, 2) that guests must RSVP and 3) that all proceeds go to the artists. This way your neighbors know you didn’t just open a rollicking 7-day-a-week music venue in your house without telling anyone.)

Spreading the word: The Invitation
Here are some ideas you may find useful when putting your invitation together:
We would like to invite you to join us for an intimate house concert with Argentine Latin Grammy nominee María Volonté and Kevin Carrel Footer at our home.
{DATE and TIME here}
hosted by {Your name here!}
{Your address here}
Suggested Contribution: $20 per person at the door (all proceeds go to the artists)
RSVP: {your email or telephone here}

About the show:
The Blue Tango Tour — a collaboration between the celebrated Argentine tango singer María Volonté and California harmonica player Kevin Carrel Footer — is a ground-breaking musical project exploring the emotional and musical crossroads where tango and the blues embrace.
This globe-trotting duo celebrates the deep spiritual bond that joins tango and the blues, as two musical genres born in desire and marginality, many times censored yet always resurgent and speaking directly to our hungry souls. When they play together, Maria’s voice and guitar fill the stage with echoes of tango’s forbidden pleasures while Kevin’s harmonica whines with the lament of the solitary blues soul.

Bios, photos and videos that you can use to tell your friends about the concert are here: