by Christopher Hintz, Founder/President
When the event industry came to an abrupt halt in March, it found us working through several scenarios. None of which seemed familiar to the "normal" way our business worked.
Normal for us was phone calls with event planners, brides, entertainment committees and prom committees.
One thing was for sure – the calls were replaced with other calls. These calls were less happy, more worried about relocation of dates and postponements, instead of when we should arrive for setup, how long we can play and what fun and formal songs our clients wanted.
We're constantly looking to solve problems, provide happiness and create memories for people with music, lighting and decor.
When people gradually started to work from home as the "new normal" many of our staff did as well. We found that there were so many elements of our new normal that felt odd. The kitchen table was now an impromptu desk for creative collaborations. Our coffee meetings at Josiah's and Coffea were now via Zoom, Google Hangouts or Skype (with way worse coffee I might add).
As our time was increasingly in front of screens and on social media, some of my industry friends were going live with live DJ Sessions. Since my Facebook feed is like most others, filled with friends and industry colleagues, most of my feed was full of other DJs playing music.
At first, I thought the idea of going live with music was just "another DJ playing music online." Thankfully I remembered that my Facebook feed was also full of past clients and people who weren't seeing every DJ friend they knew streaming to social.
Two weeks ago I turned my turntables on for the first time.
The response? Unbelievable!
Within two hours of playing music, there were at least 100 comments or requests, over 140 people watched the first night's videos and the feedback was tremendous!
"Thanks for the pick me up!"
"It's like being OUT for the first time in weeks."
"This is awesome!"
What we were doing is playing music that connects with people! Music that is fun, familiar and makes you wanna dance! Even when it's 15 above with snow...in April.
After the initial feedback we decided to use the tools that were no longer being used for other events to host an online event every weekday from 3-5 p.m. to play music for others who were working from home. We want to provide a temporary escape from the news of the day, which usually isn't very comforting at all.
The word started to grow. What was first a stream with 100 people, has become something that has been viewed 2,000+ times per day with people from across the country and internationally as well.
People started asking for a virtual "tip jar" via Venmo or Paypal. Instead we directed them to the One Sioux Falls Fund to help those who were providing the resources to the greater Sioux Falls community for their outreach programs.
We're still doing what we've always done: bring some positive vibes, fun music and create fun events for people to enjoy.
The method of delivery has changed, but the message remains consistent. Music has the power to unite us all! We're happy to provide that soundtrack from 3-5 p.m. on Facebook Live.