I've become a big fan of this site. The name comes from buskers jamming on the street, so the word jam became jelly, which it is in the States, and the idea of streetjelly was born about nine months ago.
I only found it about a month ago, but ever since I've become a frequent returner, at least everyday I check out who's playing live in my living room, from theirs.
You can buy tokens via paypal to tip the artists as they perform and chat, in a chat box with fun smilies to show your appreciation for the artist. The artist then gets paid, which is a great idea.
So for a couple of weeks I got involved in the chat window and got familiar with the regulars. I must say that at the moment there seems to be a small band of people that are there for most artists. Although they have about about 500 artists signed up, or who have joined there only ever seems to be at the most three people playing at the times that I tune in. Now this may be because I'm in the UK and the site is hosted in America so the time difference means that prime time will be about 3am over here, so I'm not sure how many streams are running in the middle of the night.
So eventually I decided to schedule a slot for myself last Friday at 10pm, but a couple of days before I did an impromptu session, at about 11pm, after watching one of my "friends" from G+ songwriters hangouts and playing along at home. He of course couldn't hear me. I had all my gear set up and logged in, hit broadcast and did about 10 minutes. In that ten minutes I had an audience of about six people and earned myself 13 tokens, which amounted to about $2.50. I was pleasantly surprised by this response, and looked forward to my scheduled slot on Friday.
So Friday at 9.55pm, I fired up my gear ready to broadcast, and nothing worked even though twenty minutes earlier it was working fine. PANIC! But it was quickly resolved when I found a button on the mixer that shouldn't have been pressed, I click it off and press BROADCAST. It shows me on the screen, but somethings wrong with the chat window, it all freezes up. Jackie is watching in the next room and with a bit of refreshing I am finally on line and its working. Don't you just love live broadcasting.
I the end I do about an hour and get lots of tips and nice comments in the chat window. This online gigging is quite fun, not at all like a live gig, and quite different to the Google plus hang outs, but although I can't talk to people direct it'smore fun than the songwriters thing that I've done on G+
When I check my account I've already made over seven dollars, I've got to get to fifty before I get paid so I've scheduled another show for Sunday at 10pm UK time. Come and tune in, you don't have to be a member you can just go to the site and listen. If yo sign up you can buy tokens and tip me, and make comments and post smilies. It's all a bit crazy and weird but believe me its fun.
Come and meet slam2012, Imageandfamily, Quint, Frankie and a host of others, and be sure to tune in to Damian, my favourite artist of the moment with his bluegrass country syle.
I know that doing live gigs in front of a live audiences is where it's been at for me for all my playing career, and that this idea of performing over the net is weird. But let me say that in the end it;s no different. Close your eyes and connect, there is an audience that is engaged, hanging on to your performance, going with you. Thats often more than be said for playing down the pub where most of the audience is engaged in their own conversations and will sometimes applause, but mostly will have missed the song, and applaud out of politeness, if they applaud at all.
Here on streetjelly they are here to engage, to listen, and to support you. I'm a big fan and I hope you will become a big fan also.
This is real, as real as any little local pub or club. Ok it's new, its different but give it some of your time and I'm sure you will agree that streetjelly is another way for us all to enjoy live music, and in the end live trumps recorded anyday.
Please come and join this fantastic future for musicians and songwriters around the world