Greetings friends! This coming holiday season we’re excited to be doing a handful of intimate, all-acoustic Bluegrass Holiday House Concerts in people’s homes!
We’re working up a whole new set of festive bluegrass versions of our favorite christmas and holiday songs that we will be performing live in people’s living rooms, basements and garages (heated of course) with no amplification*, just the way this music was meant to be heard! Each performance will be a one-of-a-kind live music experience for the band, hosts and guests to share that simply isn’t possible in any other setting.
Are you interested in hosting one of our holiday house concerts? If so, please read through the FAQ below and if it seems like a good fit for your home, please fill out the form in the sidebar (or bottom of the page if you’re on a mobile device) or call Eric Christopher at 651-271-4392.
* If you have a larger than average space and more than 40 people attending we can provide a small sound system to augment the live sound.
House Concert FAQ
What is a house concert?
It’s a concert in your home — simple as that. You invite your friends, family, neighbors and co-workers, and we bring the music.
At most house concerts, the band plays acoustically, without a sound system. For bluegrass, this is the ideal set-up. Acoustic instruments sound best when there are no speakers or microphones getting in the way. House concerts are the true hi-fi musical experience.
House concerts are not meant to be background music for a party; instead, the concert IS the party! Building in time for a pre-show “meet and mingle” is recommended and is a great way to allow guests to chat with one another, enjoy some food and beverages and get comfortable before the show.
What do I need to put on a house concert?
The requirements are pretty simple:
1. You need a space that can accommodate five musicians (the footprint of the full five-piece band is about 10’ x 5’) and however many guests you invite.
2. You need an audience. In order to make the house concert work financially for the musicians, you generally need to be able to draw between 20 and 40 guests. Of course, the more the merrier if your space can accommodate it.
3. You need a chair for every guest. This is a critical detail, and one that’s easy to overlook. You want your guests to be as comfortable as possible during the performance and having them seated will ensure the optimal listening and viewing environment for everyone in attendance. Don’t have enough chairs? No problem, ask your guests to bring a folding chair or a cushion for the floor.
How do I advertise the house concert?
1. You get the word out to a lot of people. House concerts can be either private or public events, its up to you. If you’d like to invite only the bluegrass fans you know, we’re happy to assist you by providing you with promotional materials that you can print out or forward along with an email.
If you’d like to open your house to the public, we can help you with this part. We can promote the concert on our website, through our mass emails, through social media, from the stage and at the record table.
2. Take reservations by phone or email for the concert. RSVP’s are an essential part of the planning process for both the musicians and the hosts.
Generally, it’s a good idea to overbook your house concert. You can almost always count on a few last-minute cancellations, especially during the holiday season, when we often find ourselves overbooked and overcommitted.
Do I provide food and/or beverages for the guests?
This is entirely up to you. We find that potlucks tend to work best. If guests bring a dish or a bottle of something to share, it can help break the ice and give the evening a homier and more relaxed vibe.
How are the musicians paid?
Because we are guests in your home, we don’t ask our fellow guests — the audience — for a set cover charge the way we would at a formal venue. Instead, we ask for a free-will donation.
Free-will donations at house concerts are typically between $15 and $30, but we believe that no one should be excluded because they can’t afford a the cover charge. Of course, anyone can make a more generous donation, if they’re able and would like to.
The band can collect the donations and deal with the money side of things, so you don’t have to. Donations are made at the show. We’re set up to accept cash, credit cards and checks. Because the audience are often people you know and are guests in your home, hosts are encouraged to announce the free-will donation to the audience to increase participation.
We also typically sell CDs, t-shirts and hats at house concerts.
How long is the concert?
We usually play two 40 minute sets, with a short intermission in between. The total time of the concert is approximately two hours. The band is available to meet and mingle with guests for up to 40 minutes after the show
A typical evening show would begin with a social hour for guests at 6:30pm followed by the concert, running from about 7:30pm to 9:30pm, with one intermission. A typical weekend afternoon show would have a social hour from 12-1pm followed by the concert, running from about 1pm to 3pm, with one intermission. If you have other hours in mind, or would prefer one long set, just let us know!
Ready to Host?
Great news! Just fill out the form in the sidebar (or bottom of the page if you’re on a mobile device) or call Eric Christopher at 651-271-4392. We can’t wait to share an evening of acoustic holiday music with you.