GigTown is an all-in-one local music app that allows users to discover local musicians, post a gig to book live music, listen to original songs by your local musicians and more – it truly is a revolutionary platform that supports all avenues of the local music scene. The music technology startup launched in January 2015 by Andy and Steve Altman (former President and Vice Chairman of Qualcomm). The free app, available everywhere but currently focused in San Diego, Los Angeles, Seattle, Nashville, Austin and New York City, is customized to meet the personalized needs of artists, consumers and venues around town. Easily downloadable and available on iOS and Android devices, GigTown is equipped with unique features and is a place for people to plug-in to local music, anywhere and anytime. The GigTown team has plans to launch in new cities as it continues to grow and is passionate about creating a win-win-win for local musicians, venues and music fans across the nation.
BusinessInterviews.com: What inspired you to launch your business?
Andy Altman: There’s something very wrong with an industry so full of creative, talented people who aren’t getting paid for sharing their music. A combination of my dad and I continually brainstorming, my parents’ annual concert fundraiser, and a trip to the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival really inspired me to realize that live music should be easily accessible to all. I came in as a tech geek who knew little about music, and find myself constantly asking others why things are this way. My hope is that by focusing on getting local musicians paid first and foremost, GigTown will shake up the music world from the ground floor, and for the better.
BusinessInterviews.com: Do you have any recent success stories that you’d like to share with our readers?
Andy Altman: GigTown has seen major success with over 5,000 musicians nationwide. So far, the artists signed up have made over $500,000 in gigs booked through the GigTown platform. Since January 2016, musicians received $120,000 in tips paid out by GigTown to artists nationwide.
BusinessInterviews.com: What issue does your core product help solve and how so?
Andy Altman: The core product makes it incredibly easy to book live music for any kind of event. Our main method for booking music is called “Post a Gig.” A party host, event planner, venue or even a corporation can use GigTown to post their event details – date, time, location, preferred style, budget, and a note for the musicians to provide a bit more information. Artists that fit the criteria of the gig get notified via push notification and email and can submit to play if they are interested and available within the budget. The booker can then chat with the artists who submit, review their music and videos, and tap one button to confirm the gig. It’s essentially Uber for live music – on numerous occasions we’ve booked an artist to come play on as little as 45 minutes’ notice!
BusinessInterviews.com: What has been your biggest challenge as a business owner and how have you met that challenge?
Andy Altman: The biggest challenge was breaking through the skepticism that most artists in the music industry carry with them. Doubt practically runs in their veins after years of working, creating, producing, but ultimately still fighting to make ends meet. Most musicians who hear about GigTown want to dismiss it immediately as just another ‘thing.’ To break past that hurdle, GigTown had to become super involved in the various music communities of the cities we’re in. We hit the ground in each market with the attitude that we would do whatever we could possibly do to help local musicians in San Diego, Seattle, Austin and Nashville. Every music scene is different and artists face different challenges in each. We dedicate the time to go out to shows, hang out to chat with the artists, have coffee anytime someone shows interest, and listen to the artists’ music and know their songs. Ultimately it’s about having a true passion for what we’re doing.
BusinessInterviews.com: What’s the most exciting thing on the horizon for you/your Company?
Andy Altman: We’re nearing an exciting product launch in October that is going to make it even easier for more people to book live music! It will really complement our current booking system and we’re looking forward to seeing how many new gig opportunities we can open up for artists across the nation.
BusinessInterviews.com: What advice do you have for other entrepreneurs and business owners? What do you wish someone told you?
Andy Altman: Before starting GigTown, I’d always hear other entrepreneur’s stories about how hard it is, how much time is involved, and how nerve-racking the whole process is. I always though to myself that many of the stories seemed extreme. I was wrong. My advice is to believe the stories. Taking a startup from nothing to something is a huge task, and taking it from something to something big is a way larger task. People told me that you have to be passionate about what you’re doing, and I 100% agree. The roller coaster of emotions as a startup is a real thing, and you have to be fired up about the big picture and how your idea can change the world to be able to fight through the tough times.
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