Reinventing the In-store Appearance

Once upon a time, it was fairly standard for a band to appear at a record store while on tour. They might perform in some capacity, they might just sign records. They were typically seen as great opportunities to connect with local fans and obviosuly boost sales for both the artist and the record store. As physical music sales took a dive, so did the frequency of these once common in-store appearances*.

This past April, my band The New Limits was involved in a promotion between Boston Scene Party, a collective of music web sites, and Sound Lion, a high-end audio store in Harvard Square. I thought this a novel way to bring back the “in-store appearance.” Music fans still exist, there’s still a community to connect with, and there is a market for audio gear. Our CD was available at Sound Lion for the month of April, and on April 24, we performed a stripped-down set. We played as a 5 piece, without our keys, a second trumpet, or saxophone. I played an acoustic guitar, our drummer played with a smaller kit, and our singer/trumpet player played a melodica. This might be the first recording of the song “Transition,” performed as a slightly more rocksteady version of the two-tone song we wrote it to be. We performed the uptempo tune “Compass” as a reggae tune. “Pressure Up” is performed pretty much as we usually do it, and “Part of Me” was already a minimalist reggae tune, so that worked out well.

As more videos from this gig are published, I’ll add them to the above playlist. Yes, there was a terrible movie showing on the screen in back of us. In retrospect, we should have turned it off. At the time, it was really funny.

* I have no data to back this up, it just sounds right to me.

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