In creating a perfect booking experience, here would be the components: booking support, well paid gig, a room of appreciative and attentive fans, non-smoking, somewhat early. (This is where other artists hopefully pump a power fist in agreement.) And...even if not, I apparently am not the only one who rallies around these ideas. There has been a company formed based on these concepts, and it is right in Oklahoma's backyard.
Fanswell was founded in 2012, by Jon Cooper and Graham Colton, and is based out of both Oklahoma and L.A. Jon is a Yale graduate who has a long list of experience in television and business development. He currently resides in L.A., and yet has a connection to Oklahoma after growing up in the state. Graham, a successful singer-songrwriter who has toured with artists such as Kelly Clarkson, John Mayer, Maroon 5, Counting Crows, DMB, Colbie Caillat and John Mellencamp is from Oklahoma City. His roots are planted in OKC with his growing family and Fanswell office.
Cooper and Colton joined forces to form Fanswell, an online platform for music artists to turn their fans into hosts for shows beyond bars and clubs. It is a collaborative effort where an enthusiastic host can set up a show with an artist, and the artist has a welcoming space, well compensated gig, and listening room full of people. It's a win, win...win! Fanswell is the booking "broker" if you call it. There are a few different ways shows can pan out, which is described in the FAQ section of the Fanswell page. But overall, the system benefits everyone involved.
After grabbing coffee with Graham on a weekday afternoon, it was apparent that Cellar Door Music Group and Fanswell had some common threads. We both want to support working artists to the fullest extent and believe community is an important part of doing so. After Graham shared some foundational information on Fanswell, and a partnership idea, we were both optimistic about facilitating shows together.
Don't miss our CDMG-Fanswell kickoff show Saturday, April 11th at Hidden Dragon Yoga Studio. Oklahoma City-based band, Bowlsey, will be performing at 8:00pm, tickets are $15 and the purchase link can be found here. Ticket price includes wine and RoughTail beer, make sure to buy early--door price will raise to $20.
As Fanswell continues to pick up momentum and grow it's concept, the support of Oklahoma fans, businesses and artists is deeply valued. Graham commented towards the end of our coffee meet about how amazing it would be if Fanswell could truly launch out of Oklahoma. I agreed and said, "This would be the place. These are our people."
Oklahoma has the most welcoming and heartfelt community that is propelling film, music and art further along. We also have a genuine, familial feel when it comes to our music scene. Fanswell fits somewhere right in the middle--it stands within the circle where fan meets artist and officiates a harmonious union. This company is truly making a difference in the world of live music and artist performance, and it has endless possibilities in growing its platform. For more information on Fanswell, visit their site and check out the video below!