Why we started 2ndLine

Today, we launched the first online venue where creators and fans watch interactive concerts together.

Our Inspiration

For more than a century, New Orleans jazz bands have struck up impromptu performances, marching through the city as they play. Drawn to the music, residents leave their stoops and porches to parade behind the band, gathering together in a second line — a spontaneous community. As Louis Armstrong put it, “the spirit hits them and they follow.”

At 2ndLine.tv, we build digital second lines. Our goal is to leverage the interactivity of the online world and apply that to enhancing concert events. We’re developing a new type of experience for creators and their fans to share moments together, across genres. We can extend the “live experience” without trying to replicate it.

Our Evolution

When we started, we thought that the right play was to get into live-streaming concerts. But, we quickly realized (take the recent Apple announcement as clear evidence) live streaming is either prohibitively expensive to produce, frightfully low-quality for viewers, or an unfortunate combination of both!

We looked at the notion of “live” and asked our earliest users a whole lot of questions about their experience. We crystallized around two essential points that define the live experience:

  1. Direct connection between creator and fans (the gaze of the artist).
  2. A feeling of engagement with other passionate viewers watching simultaneously (the magic of the crowd).

Welcome to 2ndLine!

2ndLine delivers both benefits of live by letting artists re-purpose their existing videos into interactive online shows, thereby side-stepping the hazards of live production.

Shows on 2ndLine have three key attributes:

  1. Ephemeral. Videos shown on 2ndLine are never archived, and the experience you have – with real-time audience chat and creator Q&A – is entirely unpredictable.
  2. Social. Screenings are live events with artist-to-fan engagement, fan-to-fan interactions, and a real sense of community.
  3. Ticketed. Viewers pay what they will to support the artists they love. Creators earn the money they deserve from their work.

As we launch our new site live today, we feel such a tremendous potential for cross-pollination and dialogue among creative minds, as well as a brand new ability for communities of fans to feel connected around art online.

We hope you’ll join us. The possibilities are endless!

-Stephen Backer, Co-founder & CEO

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