Listly Is A Cool Tool For Live Music Fans

list.ly live music concert fans chicago venues
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list.ly live music concert fans chicago venues

I got another cool tool to share with you that I discovered while I was at the Community Manager Unconference.

During my adventures I had the pleasure of meeting Nick Kellet co-founder of Listly. I told him about our community of live music fans here on Live Fix and after hearing about the story behind Listly I was excited to merge this tool with our other live music experiments.

I’ve been enjoying Listly these last couple months and I think it’s a great tool for live music fans for a few reasons.

Feeds Our Current Addictions

First, Listly enhances several of the things we love do to as music and concert fans: make lists, rank, share, catalog and categorize.

Empowers Us

Listly empowers us to socialize, evolve and experiment with list-making as it specifically relates to all the niche topics of the live concert experience.

And Listly makes it pretty easy to add to current lists and create your own. There’s even a gamification element that rewards top users with a point system.

More Meaningful, Contextual Concert Fan Storytelling

But what really gets me jazzed about using Listly is that, if used creatively and effectively, it can empower us to add more context and meaning to the story of how live music changes our lives forever.

Overall, it can be a great tool to rank, document and share our favorite venues, mobile apps, emotions, live albums and concert documentaries, and other supporting elements of concert fan storytelling.

Our First List: Top Chicago Venues

So to kick-start our experiment with Listly I’ve created a list (below) of all our favorite Chicago live music venues that I invite you to interact with right away.

In the coming weeks, I’ll be posting more lists that include our favorite live music blogs, albums, concert fan communities and our world-wide music venue bucket list and more.

Go ahead and check out our list below and let me know what you think of Listly and how we can use it to explore and share our live concert experiences. When you make your own, go head and post a link to your list in the comments below.

And stay tuned for more as we invite Nick to talk more about Listly and live music on a future episode of Live Fix Radio.

[listly id=”17V” theme=”light” layout=”full” numbered=”yes” image=”yes” items=”all”]

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StagePage And More Live Music Mobile Apps That Rock

stagepage mobile app
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stagepage mobile app

 

 

During this episode of Live Fix Radio, we’re diving deeper into our exploration of the best mobile apps for concert fans. Listen in to our chat with Alex Miller as she shares the story behind StagePage, her mission to improve how we remember our concert experiences and why she will never forget seeing the Rolling Stones live at Busch Stadium.

Subscribe via iTunes.

Show Notes:

Segment one: News and other cool stuff you should know about

Segment two (26:35): Interview with Alex Miller of StagePage and her favorite concert experiences

Segment three (56:39): Our favorite concert mobile apps

Music played during the show
  • The Rolling Stones – “Under My Thumb (Live)” – 1966
  • Chairlift – “Planet Health” Live at the Empty Bottle  –  2012
  • The Who – ” I Can See For Miles (Live)” – 1968

 

What Apps Are You Rockin’?

Have you used any of these mobile apps? What do you think of StagePage’s new approach to live music mobile apps? Got a question about concert fan apps or another topic we talked about during the show?

Share your concert experiences and thoughts about this podcast in the comments below, on Twitter @livefixmedia, on Facebook , Google Plus, or call the concert fan hotline at 773-609-4341, and we’ll include them in a future episode of Live Fix Radio.

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Product Review: Experimenting with the Sony Bloggie Touch MHS-TS20

sony bloggie touch product review
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sony bloggie touch product review

Continuing our exploration of cool gadgets for concert fans, here’s a review of the new Sony Bloggie Touch.

Our review of the  previous version of the Bloggie got me excited about the possibilities to record short 2-3 minute personal journal-style videos that chronicle our concert experiences. So needless to say, I was looking forward to testing out this new and improved version.

We all know that YouTube is full of videos of concert fans capturing the action that’s going on onstage.

And considering what we know about concert fan emotions,  I’m been testing out the Sony Bloggie Touch and experimenting with it recently to see  how we could use it to better chronicle, capture and share the emotional impact of our concert experiences– before, during and after shows. More on than in moment.

Goodbye Old Bloggie, Hello New Bloggie

There’s a lot reason why I really enjoyed testing out the new Bloggie Touch.

For starters, I liked the new and improved design. The brushed metal and sleeker black casing is definitely better looking and more durable than the previous version.

Though I did like the swivel head of the older version, this new design is certainly sturdier, lighter and more natural to hold. And the onscreen touch controls are easier to use, especially in low-light situations, like when you’re at a concert at a darkened venue and you can’t see but have to relay on touch and trust where your fingers go without looking down.

With the Bloggie all you need to do is press the on/off button on the side and then with a slight movement of your thumb to push the big red record button to capture video, or slide your index finger a short inch to click the shutter to snap a quick still shot when you’re in the photo mode. The intuitive touchscreen navigation and ability to switch to taking a photo worked great when I wanted to grab a quick photo while I was recording video of band or the crowd.

Since the Bloggie no longer has the swivel head with this Touch model, Sony does offer the self-recording feature with the release of the Sony Bloggie Duo model, which came out later this year as I was testing out the Bloggie Touch. I haven’t had a chance to test out the Duo yet, but the it does look like a pretty neat camera with its small 2” live screen on the front so you can seen what you’re recording.

How Did It Do In A Low-light Concert Setting?

Though it’s still not as good as using a more advanced handy-cam, the Bloggie Touch still did a lot better in low-light than I expected. The auto-focus lets you zoom in from wide angles to small objects and I used this feature a few times when I was going from shooting the whole band on stage to just the mic or the fingers playing a guitar. The face-detection feature was fun to play around with too but I wasn’t quite sure how to make use of it for what I wanted to do, so it really didn’t make that big a difference in the long run.

The 1080P HD video capabilities definitely gives you the power to create pretty impressive video quality considering that you’re using a MP4 YouTuber-style mini-camcorder.  Without a doubt, the Exmor™ CMOS sensor delivers a high-quality and a much improved low-light recording capability. It’s also a huge improvement over the previous Bloggie model which was sub-par in low-light situations.

But I would also make sure to hold the camera the right way when your shooting, meaning that when I recorded the Chicago Rocks Tour video in the car on the way home, I was holding the camera vertically which made the final video into a thin vertical strip, compared to the MOBfest 2011 Concert Fan Chronicles video when which I held camera horizontally and the final video filled up the entire screen width on YouTube the way I intended.  It would have been nice to know that that would happen before I filmed the video, so consider yourself informed.

Even though you can hook up an external mic to it, I was still impressed with the sound quality I got when I recorded the video at the Kickback concert at the Hideout. I moved around the venue recording various clips during the show to see how it recorded. Again it’s not awesome sound, but for what I wanted to do it gave me just what I needed, which was good enough audio to use on our Live Fix podcast and forthcoming concert fan mixtapes.

sony bloggie touch product review

Does the Bloggie Touch Take Good Photos?

As far as photos go, with a 12.8 megapixel camera the Bloggie Touch takes high-quality still shots too. And since I loved using it even when I wasn’t at a show, I tested it out in non-concert situations too.

And as you see in the pictures below, it did a fine job of snapping some aftermath shots as I attempted to shovel myself out of the snowy depths of the Great Midwestern Blizzard of 2011 back in February.

Can You Get Social With It?

The editing and social networking uploading software that came with the it was fun to use, but it was a bit clunky and took up quite a bit or memory on my computer. Once you plug the Bloggie Touch with the pop-out USB attachment at the bottom of the Bloggie,  the software immediately recognizes it and lets you easily grab the videos/photos from the device, catalog and edit your them, and then upload them to YouTube or Flickr for instant sharing.

The rechargeable lithium battery also charges while it’s plugged into the USB port which saves on batteries. And this version kept a charge for over two hours while in constant use, which again is an improvement from the other Bloggie that crapped out under an hour.

Mobile Phones vs. Bloggie Touch

You’re probably wondering if it’s worth it to get the Bloggie when your mobile phone can do what you need it to do.  And you’re probably right in saying that considering that the value and need of these shoot-and-share mini-camcorders has been challenged by the ever-advancing video/photo capabilities of mobile phones.

But the truth is my Motorola Droid and other mobile devices I’ve experimented with don’t always work as smoothly as I would like it to. And more times than not, the video and audio quality of my Droid is not what I’m hoping for either.  That said, the Bloggie Touch is certainly a worthy back-up and/or alternative to just using your mobile phone, which again, is often limited in photo, video/audio quality and memory storage.

Wrapping Up Our Bloggie Touch Experiment

Overall, I was very happy with how the Bloggie allowed me to quickly and easily do everything I wanted to during the experiments. I had a lot of fun using the Bloggie Touch. And to be honest, I’m kind of sad that I had to send it back to Sony after I finished writing this review.

At the competitive price of around $130 — which is fairly standard for these types of mini-cameras — I found it to be an exciting tool that has a lot of potential to tell help you simply and easily create videos and share our life-changing concert experiences with each your fellow concert fans.

Again, my main goal with this Bloggie Touch experimental review was to start showing how we can creatively turn the camera on ourselves and tell our own self-made and inspiring concert fan stories, instead of just recording the artist during the show.

In the end, there’s a lot of ways to you can tell your concert story with video. And you can record, chronicle and share your concert experiences whether you’re using a mobile phone or one of these mini-camcorders.

But however you do it, I just hope that you do at least start thinking about how to make your own videos. And I hope  that this experimental review got your creative juices flowing.

Thanks again for following along and I invite you to check out our other cool gadget product reviews. I also invite you join our ongoing video experiment here at Live Fix by posting a link to your own concert videos in the comments below.

What Gadgets Rock Your World?

Got a favorite gadget or mobile app that you love to use at concerts? Have thoughts about the Sony Bloggie Touch? Let us know what you think and we’ll share your feedback during a future episode of Live Fix Radio.

 

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Before Your Next Show: Get To Know Thrillcall and Earlove

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earlove

During this episode of Live Fix Radio we explore how Thrillcall.com helps concert fans find their favorite live shows and discover emerging artists, and how Earlove makes sure your ears stay safe and sound while you get your rock on.

Subscribe via iTunes.

Show Notes:

We’ve featured the Thrillcall.com concert widget on Live Fix (in the right column) since last year and we’re excited to have Courtnee Rizzo, Social Media Manager of Thrillcall.com, give us the inside scoop about how the San Francisco-based startup helps connect fans to the live music experience. Courtnee also filled us in on what she enjoys the most about reviewing concerts on the Thrillcall blog,  and why she’ll never (ever) forget seeing Coldplay live.

Chicago-based DJ, entrepreneur and hearing protection advocate Carolynn Travis tells us what inspired her to create Earlove for live music fans and bands, and why she ranks Orbital live in 1999 as one of her all-time favorite concerts.

Product Review For You

Continuing our exploration of cool stuff for concert fans, we also tell you why we give Earlove earplugs and the Etymotic HF2 earphones “Two Ears Up” after we put them through a very thorough concert fan examination at SXSW 2011 and other live shows this year.

What Did You Hear During the Podcast?

Orbital – “Chime” Live At Glastonbury 2004 (iTunes)

Coldplay – “Politik” Live in Sydney 2003 (iTunes)

Thanks again for listening and be sure to tell us what gadgets and sites you love to use to rock your favorite concerts!

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Introducing Live Fix Radio: The Official Podcast For Concert Fans

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Live Fix Radio Podcast

Yes, my friends, the time has come to launch Live Fix Radio! And we’re starting this new and unique podcast with a live music memory experiment and celebration focusing on The Arcade Fire, Lady Gaga, Grinderman, LCD Sound System and more bands that rocked live in 2010 and are currently blazing a tour trail in 2011. Continue reading

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Is SPINearth a Mobile Haven For Concertgoers?

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SpinEarth 

I’ve asked you before about this topic.

And whether you agree with me or not, the use of mobile technology (tweeting, texting and cell phone videos) is a key part of today’s concertgoing experience. 

I know it played a pivotal role in how I saw and reviewed M.Ward‘s and Miike Snow ‘s live shows.

I’ll admit that it took me awhile to get used to it and to see how using mobile technology enhances the concert experience.

But eventually I did see how it could be used, among many things, to understand  psychologically and emotionally, why we love going to concerts.

I also believe that, if used correctly, mobile technology and certain applications can certainly enhance and help show us more about what goes on in our minds and bodies during our concert experiences.

SPINEarth

That said, when I read this review of  SPIN Magazine’s newly released SPINearth iPhone app by Mike at Sound Citizen, I wondered  if SPINearth would benefit our concert experiences, like the other mobile technology that I’ve experimented with on Live Fix.

Here’s a snippet of Mike’s review:

For example, I just finished watching a video of Pearl Jam and Chris Cornell perform “Hunger Strike” from their Temple of the Dog days at a recent concert at Gibson Amphitheater. The video itself was jumpy as hell – to be expected from user-generated videos, I guess. There are also updates from the correspondents as they travel and other interesting features.

The other interesting feature about the SPINearth app, as Mike points out, is the community it’s connected to. I’ll be taking a closer look at Spinearth.tv (above photo) to get a better idea of how it’s serving live music fans. But in the meantime, I encourage you to check it out and let me know what you think.  

Though I don’t own an iPhone (I’m a BlackBerry Storm guy at the moment), I’m sure many of you do, so I’d like to get your thoughts on mobile device concert app and the communities connected to it:

Have you used SPINearth?

Is the iPhone the best mobile device for concert fans? 

What apps/mobile devices do you use to enhance your concert experiences?

Coming up…

There’s another interesting iPhone app I want to talk with you about that will have a big impact on concert culture, so stay tuned as we continue this mobile technology discussion on a future post.

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