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TheStreet Open House

The Company With a Window Into the Future of Live Concerts

Stocks in this article: PAAPL

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- As I explain in Crucial Facts You Should Know About Apple vs. Pandora, Pandora (P) will continue to emphasize advertiser-backed "Pandora Presents" events with performers at all levels of the bigness spectrum (from the Mowgli's to Bridgit Mendler to Celine Dion). These live events give sponsors the opportunity to target Pandora listeners locally using not only geography, but variables such as age and music preference. It's a direction I do not expect Apple (AAPL) to move in.

See the above-linked piece for rationale.

As I consider everything from "Pandora Presents" to the hyper-emerging proposition of live streaming concerts, I marvel (yes, literally marvel) at how these areas not only tie together, but can work for the smallest artists to mega acts such as Springsteen and Taylor Swift.

There has never been a greater number of or more dynamic promotional and revenue-generating tools available to the music industrial complex. It comes as no surprise, however, that the record labels and their partners in this mucked-up establishment make such poor use of them or, in many cases, refuse to make use of them at all, focusing instead on a royalty battle that will likely go nowhere.

A Window Into the Future

I dislike cheesy subtitles, but this one really fits.

Last week in New York, I met with Dan Gurney, the co-founder of Concert Window.

After I wrote about the "mystery" as to why big companies and, more so, record labels have not jumped into live concert streaming with authority, Dan was one of the folks to contact me. The beauty of Concert Window is that it can work for artists at all levels.

As it stands, Gurney's company deals with small venues, but there's more coming. Gurney has already previewed some of it at Concert Window, but it's about to take additional, still undisclosed steps later this month. It's exciting. And the most pathetic factions of the music industrial complex should take note and take notes.

Yes, I know, that one dude looks exactly like Walt Mossberg.

Anyhow, an area of experimentation that has considerable promise for Concert Window opened up when Gurney, a musician, decided to live stream a show to his friends and other Concert Window subscribers. He played for a half an hour and made $200 using a pay-what-you-wish system for the "ticket" price complete with functionality for viewers to make requests and leave tips throughout the gig. Gurney told me that some performers have generated closer to $500 to $600 in revenue in just one-half to one hour of live streaming a performance.

Consider the power of a single platform -- and other platforms that choose to focus on different flavors and levels of the live experience -- that can hit venues, but also give small unsigned as well as indie artists the ability to merely open a laptop and play a show.

This eliminates so many practical factors that hold bands back.

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