For 30 minutes on Friday afternoon, Ross Hinkle and Rachel Puckett patiently explained their business model. Liveset is a new, small business founded by Hinkle on the supposition that there is a market for quality, well-crafted streaming video of musicians. Think HBO. YouTube clips are the reality television to Liveset’s HBO.
“Our inspiration from HBO is in terms of creating compelling content that people are willing to pay for,” says Hinkle. A lesser-known example is mlb.tv, a live baseball stream that lets fans stream every pitch in HD for a small fee. The third example Hinkle throws out is Netflix, which Liveset’s not-yet-available subscription option will mirror.
But Liveset isn’t a household name yet. Its only full-time employee is Puckett, whose enthusiasm bubbles over the speaker phone during their conference call. Like any new small business, Liveset has to establish itself. Its first videos have been in-house productions focusing on beautiful production values to attract a musical base and cement a reputation before piggy-backing on scheduled shows at local venues.
In short, Liveset creates HD-quality video available for streaming online either live, pay-to-watch concerts, or through subscription. Liveset splits the revenue 50/50 with the artists, after the relatively low production costs are covered. “We’re partners with the artist,” says Hinkle. “We’re much more artist-centric than venue-centric.”
To help introduce people to Liveset’s capabilities, it will offer free access to new videos every Wednesday in April starting March 30 with Theresa Andersson and John Michael Rouchell. After that—April 6: Loren Murrell and Sun Hotel; April 13: spoken word artist Kataalyst Alcindor; April 20: Mark Adam Miller and the Craft Brothers with Alexis Marceaux; and April 27: Meschiya Lake’s Magnolia Beacon & Andrew Duhon. See them at Liveset.com.