Boost Your Fan Base By Firing Your Camera Crew

from the free-bird! dept

Instead of hiring professional concert documentary crews, a growing number of bands are handing the concert documentary process over to their fans, relying on amateur video to generate low-cost promotional material while increasing fan appreciation in the process. The Beastie Boys had some success with this idea recently, using footage shot by fans to create a popular documentary. Though some complained that the finished project had an over abundance of kitsch and a noteable lack of quality, they seem to have missed the point that the very idea brought the band far more attention than yet another bland, traditional concert film ever could have. The Shins have taken this idea one step further, teaming up with Current TV to create a five minute video that’s comprised of at least one still image from over 200 spectators and their cellphones or digicams. The end result is a somewhat shaky and blurry concert film that at one point offers a video montage of the entire stage made up of dozens of fan shots. It’s a win-win situation for the bands, who boost fan loyalty and create low-cost promotional material on the fly — provided they’ve got a hard-working and patient editor.

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Comments on “Boost Your Fan Base By Firing Your Camera Crew”

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Sanguine Dream says:

Wait for it...

I’m sure that somewhere someone is thinking:

Corporate Big Suit: “We’re losing money by not making these documentaries for bands. We have to sue to recover these lost wages.”

Big time band with expensive lawyers: “We’re saving a lot of money on this idea. Let’s get a copyright/trakemark/patent on this idea so no one else can do it.”

Jon (user link) says:

Re: It will catch up with them eventually

Please – even a great Avid editor who is super fast is about $3500-5000/week. If you can’t cut a music video in a week you have no business being an editor anyway.

You might need to add an assist editor to organize all the source materials for you, at maybe $1k to $1500/week, but at the end of the day you’ve still spent way less in editorial costs than what it costs to have 4-6 camera operators, all the camera rentals, the insurance policy (EXPENSIVE!) for renting said cameras and accessories, etc. etc.

The net cost savings on stuff like this will never be outweighed by the cost of an editor and/or assistant editor.

wolff000 says:

So I CAN take my camera in to the concert now?

I wish more bands took the grateful dead route and let fans film and tape as they please. a real fan is going to buy the cd/dvd no matter how many bad copies were made at a concert. I love the concept of using the fan footage to make the videos. when you include people in things like this it makes them want to buy the product. i have never bought a behind the sccenes video on a band but i definately would if i shot some of the footage for it myself. even if my part lasted only a minute or so it would be worth the money to buy it.

Julie says:

Bad Idea

That’s all fine and good, but remember when cell phones were expensive and fewer people owned them? It was the Darwin effect. People weren’t yakking on their cell phones at the top of their lungs or talking on their phones in movie theaters.

A few months ago, a jerk with a loud 35 mm camera was taking pictures, it wasn’t a huge venue, and the band finally had him thrown out, because he was disturbing everyone. Give the masses cheap video cameras and let them tape concerts, and we’re going to have the same problem that we do with cell phones. I work hard to be able to afford good seats, and I don’t want some yutz with a ten dollar camera blocking my view.

Tyshaun says:


And our standards for quality continuously goes down in the pursuit of increasing “audience participation” to boost revenues and give ADHD afflicted youth a warm fuzzy.

P.T. Barnum just called and all the video taping fanboys had their 15 minutes, let’s let the professionals get back to producing quality concert films. I saw the Beastie Boys “film” and aside from the media buzz it was pretty darn craptacular.

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