I’m doing my first Concert Window show next week. I’m nervous.
As a singer-songwriter, I know “nerves” are normal before a live show. You know, the sweaty palms, the fast heartbeat, the wobbly knees. There’s always a little bit of that, even after over a dozen years as a performer.
But this is different. I’ve never done a live webcast gig before, so this Concert Window show is a big experiment for me. I have some nagging fears that don’t come into play in traditional venues, such as “What if my internet connection suddenly goes down?” or “What if viewers have trouble with the sound?” or “What if no one virtually shows up?”
On the other hand, I’m also super-excited about this experience. I’ve watched a couple of Concert Window laptop shows and they’ve been a hoot. I immediately got involved in the chat, pressed the “tip” button and typed “applause!” after every song. All from the confines of my comfy couch. What’s not to like for a music fan, especially on a bitter-cold December evening when heading out to the local club or coffee house is a non-negotiable “no”?
So, I’ve taken the leap and am doing my darndest to prepare. First, I created a Facebook Event and shared it with all of my fans and friends. For some reason I thought it would be fun to call it a pajama party, since it’s all about sharing music while being comfy at home, so everyone who RSVP’d started asking if I’d really be wearing PJs. Let’s just say I might.
Next, I sent an email to my mailing list letting them know about the show. That’s when my Mom and Dad and my aunt signed on. That should be interesting. I hope they’re good tippers.
Finally, I’ve been doing some advance sound-checking to allay my fears about technical difficulties (although my husband, who is in IT, warns me that with technology, anything can happen). I’ve tested the microphone and the webcam, tried out different places to sit and considered the background. I asked a couple of musician friends who have done webcasts about their experiences.
Hey, I know I can’t account for everything -- Concert Window shows are live, not recorded, so there’s always that exciting but unsettling uncertainty that comes with in-the-moment performance. But that’s what makes it fun. So we’ll see how this grand experiment goes.
Now, I just have to practice my songs!
Sharon Goldman is a singer-songwriter based in New Jersey. Her new album, Silent Lessons, will be released on January 1. www.sharongoldmanmusic.com