Many aspiring bands have yet to play one live show, let alone over 40. Then again, many aspiring bands aren’t made up of musicians between the ages of fourteen and sixteen, either. The teenage members of Throwing Wrenches, an alternative rock band from Washington, D.C., have built up a steady following after just two years of playing. Shyaer Parvez (vocals and keys), Nick Morper (drums), Jacob Elder (guitar) and Ian Aleman (bass) have performed original songs and popular covers at some of the area’s most well-known venues, including Jammin’ Java, The Electric Maid, Empire, the Washingtonian Summer Concert Series, the National Cherry Blossom Festival, the Rock N Roll DC Marathon, band battles at the 9:30 Club and The Fillmore Silver Spring. Last fall, they released their debut EP on iTunes, Amazon and Google Play. However, the band was still looking to reach a wider audience, particularly their fans outside of their city’s limits.
“All four of us have family and friends outside of the D.C. area, and because of that, a lot of them have never been able to see us perform live,” the band says. “We’re very honored to have played at a lot of local venues, so we’re always bummed when others hundreds or thousands of miles away can’t come to these places. So we started looking out for a way to let others experience our shows live regardless of where they are.”
Their search brought Throwing Wrenches to StageIt.com, a service that allows bands to stream live shows. At any time, bands can book a show through the site and their fans can get tickets for it. When the show starts, the band has their virtual audience right there in front of them. The site even has a chat box so bands can live chat with their audience. Since discovering StageIt.com, Throwing Wrenches has performed three live, virtual shows, and each time, they’ve used BoinxTV to help add to their audience’s experience.
“There are a lot of reasons we prefer BoinxTV over other ways of doing these shows,” the band says. “First, we needed a way to get audio off our mix board directly into the computer and combine with the video. BoinxTV is perfect for that, and it was super easy to do. Next, we wanted to use multiple cameras during the show. We’ve watched a lot of StageIt.com shows from other bands, and most just set up their laptop webcam in front of them and go for it. We wanted to have a better experience for our fans. Two cameras make it seem much more like one of those live concerts you see on Palladia or other live, professional recordings.
The other reason, which we think makes the shows cooler, is how easy it is for us to tell people what song we’re playing. We use the lower thirds overlap feature so that we can put the title of the song on the screen while we’re playing. We also promote our online store at www.throwingwrenchesband.com/shop. We’ve been able to sell shirts and even our debut album all because people saw that on the screen during the show! Pretty cool.”
Throwing Wrenches has had people from all around the world tune in for their virtual shows, including fans from the United States, Mexico, France, United Kingdom, Singapore and Australia. The band loves being able to interact with these fans who normally would never get the chance to see them play live.
“With apps like BoinxTV and StageIt.com, we get to reach our fans wherever they are and have the quality of the production look like bands backed by major labels,” they say. “We do it all from our basement. In fact, we even had someone on our last show ask what venue did all this cool production stuff. We told them it was just our parents in the back of the basement and BoinxTV!”
You can see Throwing Wrenches responding to instant message chats during their latest StageIt.com performance here. BoinxTV was used to capture two video cameras shooting the show, as well as the audio coming off the band’s mix board. Also, check out the band mic-ing up their instruments so they could be streamed to their internet audience here. BoinxTV helped Throwing Wrenches take in the audio from a USB interface, merge it with video and stream it up real time to StageIt.com’s servers for people around the world to see and hear through this setup. A MacBook, one USB camera, a second firewire camera and a USB interface for the audio are all managed easily through BoinxTV where lower third overlays and other videos are mixed in to give the band’s worldwide audience a great show!
Be sure to check out all of Throwing Wrenches’ awesome social media platforms so you’ll be the first to know when to grab tickets to their next show – live or virtual!