I run a record label called Print Room Productions, and Moondrop is a series of live events that I curate under my label.
Moondrop Vol. 1
In summer last year, I realized that after spending two years in Japan, it was finally time for me to play live music. So I contacted a venue that I found out about through a friend, called the Ruby Room and asked if I could book the venue for my birthday. The manager, Tim was very kind and said that there happened to be a weekday where nobody had booked an event, and they needed somebody to to come in and host something soon. I got a cheap rental price, and was able to get all the perks of a sound engineer, ticket manager, equipment and drinks included in a price of $300 a night.
I called a few friends who had bands in Tokyo and asked if they wanted to play. They were more than delighted to play for free, and I got together a band and we had a blast. Afterwards we celebrated with shots, celebrated my birthday and called it a night. By the end of it I had made $110 in profit out of ticket sales from 22 people on a Monday. I was ecstatic.
Moondrop Vol. 2
After about six months, I decided it was time to try things again. This time I wanted to go for bigger bands, with more preparation and better marketing. So I started by asking the same venue for prices in advance. To my delight they gave me a deal that was really easy to work with, so rental fees and ticket prices would break even, even if only 15 people showed up to the event.
I did some calculations and called my friends bands, who again were only too happy to play at the event. The rapper in my band, Shin Kawaguchi was so excited ( probably more excited than I was ) about the event that he called his friends at Alpaca Farm to come in and play a 30 minute set for us.
Finally our line up was Orchid (My band), Moonbaes ( a hip-hop and R&B outfit) and YOTOWN.
I realized that I had to make the poster, decide the schedule, organize extra equipment, manage ticketing, set up, clean up after the event and talk to the organizers and bands to check if everything was okay. It was a huge hassle, but I had fun and I hope to do it again!
Before the event I decided to boost the Facebook event page using about 200 yen. The reach was a lot less than what I expected, but in the process i discovered how specific marketing on Facebook could get- you can market based on how much the person uses their phones, what time they go to sleep and other creepy details!
A total of 41 people came to the event. Everyone seemed to have had a great time and I felt good - not about having made the money or organized the event, but to have been surrounded by such good people and good music. I loved having the event and performing because it makes me happy, and I'm sure it made others happy too.