Vancouver musician Dan Mangan starts a live music venue business

The Air BnB of concert halls.

Touring musicians know that some of the most memorable performances for performer and audience are those that happen spontaneously in a venue that wasn’t necessarily intended for a performance.

Similarly, hobby rooms are a cornerstone of Vancouver’s underground music scene. Imagine indie and punk shows taking place in venues built by the community for the community with plywood floors and graffiti on the walls.

Vancouver musician Dan Mangan has capitalized on the energy and fervor for live music in unconventional spaces and co-founded a web platform that supports living rooms, bookstores and warehouses.

Side Door was developed by Mangan and Nova Scotian music entrepreneur Laura Simpson in 2017, but just landed a whopping $500,000 TV deal with Arlene Dickinson. The dragon’s lair.

“I’ve been dreaming of a platform like Side Door ever since I performed hundreds of house concerts in my early days,” Mangan told VIA. “If I played in front of 30 people in a bar, I got paid in beer tickets. If I played up to 30 people in a garden, I won $500 and everyone had a more impactful experience. Small shows can bring great value to all if done right. It’s just a more convenient way to shoot with less overhead when you’re editing.”

Much like Airbnb, Side Door connects musicians with hosts and makes booking, billing, ticketing, and revenue sharing easy. It even helps with show promotion and ticket scanning or audience check-in.

Part of the platform is a feature called “Show Calls”, which allows artists and hosts to broadcast their availability to create shows. So far, more than 700 artists are associated with the platform, such as Broken Social Scene, Haviah Mighty, Said the Whale and, of course, Mangan.

“The Show Call feature was the perfect tool to find what I was really looking for,” Mangan said in a press release. 17 of them created Side Door space profiles and messaged me on the platform so I could check them out. About five of them were seriously worth considering, and in the end I found the perfect space that I would never have found otherwise. This naturally narrowed my field of action. It happened quickly and I didn’t have to waste hours going through endless DMs on social media.

In addition to the $1.3 million in ticket sales the app has generated so far, they’ve held over 400 shows in weird and wonderful spaces like breweries, galleries, farms and private homes. , and that without the approval of the Dragon.

“Side Door believes live performances can build community, uplift hearts, and generate empathy,” Simpson says.

As for the site’s impact in Vancouver, Mangan says, “there are fewer venues than ever in Vancouver. I see Side Door as a way for artists to make a living doing what they love, and everyday people to become curators for their local communities as hosts. On Side Door, you can tour regionally, or even to different suburbs of an urban center. You can really maximize your impact and create a relationship meaningful and lasting with your supporters.

Mangan imagines a world where artists can book shows in minutes with complete strangers.

The concept is a potential antidote to the recent closure of many venues, the monopoly of big ticket sellers, and the struggle of touring independent artists to connect with audiences.

@danmanganmusic #screengreen ♬ Sandstorm – Darude

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