We hosted a house concert and I’m excited to share all the details with you, plus tips if you’re looking to host a favorite local artist in your home this year.
My first house concert experience was in my early 20’s in the Basement of a fraternity house seeing Tyrone Wells, at the University of Washington. It was acoustic music at it’s best and I’ve been a huge fan of his ever since.
This year I decided to replicate these younger days vibes and host a concert at our house for Matt’s birthday and it was so much fun!
Hosting a concert at home was an incredibly special way to gather our friends and family, showcase the birthday boy’s favorite music, and have a great time. Whether you’re looking to host an intimate acoustic session or a full-blown concert, with a little planning and preparation, you can make your home concert an unforgettable experience as well.
What are home concerts?
Home concerts are live music performances that take place in someone’s home, usually in a living room, backyard, or other designated space… Or a frat house basement if you happen to be on a college campus. 😉
They offer an intimate, relaxed setting where guests can enjoy live music up close and personal. It’s the opposite of a huge show and all the better for that.
How did our house concert work?
House concerts work by hosting a live music performance in a private home, normally this is someone you know or adore.
As hosts, we invited guests, and our friend Chris Hefiner played in the designated space in our living room. Guests usually pay a suggested donation, which goes directly to the performer, or you can charge a fee. Since this was hosted as a birthday party, we just paid the musician and our friends enjoyed the show.
House concerts offer a unique experience for both guests and performers, as they offer an intimate, personal setting for live music. I think Chris enjoyed the night just as much as we did.
Best places to find bands To Play At Home
There are a few ways to find house concert bands.
You can search for local musicians and bands in your area, check social media sites like Facebook and Twitter for house concert groups, or check out websites like this one, which has an entire network you can join specializing in connecting home hosts with performers.
I think it works best though if you know and love someone local to just reach out and ask them! Often for a small fee they are happy to spend a night playing to true fans.
How do I throw a small concert?
- To throw a small concert, first, decide on the type of music you want to showcase and make a guest list.
- Next, choose a location for the concert, such as your living room or backyard.
- Set up a sound system or hire a professional sound engineer to ensure quality sound.
- Consider seating arrangements for your guests and make sure there’s enough space for everyone.
- Finally, plan food and drink options and create a comfortable and welcoming atmosphere for your guests.
- Don’t forget to promote the concert and invite your guests with plenty of notice.
Here’s how I hosted our concert at home, from planning to execution:
The first step in hosting a concert at home is to plan ahead. Think about the type of music you want to showcase, and who you want to invite. Consider the size of your space, and how many guests you can comfortably accommodate.
Once you have a rough idea of the type of concert you want to host, start reaching out to potential performers and guests. Make sure to give them plenty of notice, so they can clear their schedules and plan accordingly. Then create an invite or poster to share with your friends.
Similar to our New Years Eve Party, I used Canva to create our home concert invites and just sent it via text to our concert loving crew.
Setting Up The Space
Once you have your guest list and performers confirmed, it’s time to set up a room for your concert. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
You’ll want to make sure that all of your guests have a comfortable place to sit during the concert. Consider renting chairs, or laying out cushions or blankets on the floor. Make sure everyone has a clear view of the performers, and that there’s enough space for people to move around if necessary.
The sound quality is one of the most important aspects of any concert. If you’re hosting a smaller concert, you can probably get away with using your home stereo system. However, if you’re hosting a larger concert, you may need to rent professional sound equipment. Our artist brought his own system that worked great for our size space.
Lighting can make a big difference in the ambiance of your concert. Consider dimming the lights or using string lights to create a cozy atmosphere.
Decorate for the concert
Consider decorating your home for the concert. This can help create a festive, welcoming atmosphere for your guests. You can use string lights, candles, or even balloons to create a fun, celebratory vibe.
What To Serve
No concert is complete without refreshments. Depending on the time of day and the vibe of your concert, you may want to serve appetizers, snacks, or a full meal. Make sure to have plenty of non-alcoholic beverages on hand, as well as beer and wine if you plan to serve alcohol.
Consider setting up a bar area where guests can help themselves to drinks, and make sure there are plenty of napkins, plates, and utensils available.
We went with an easy appetizer set up so guests could graze as they enjoyed the show.
Schedule & Flow Of Events
Thinking through the schedule before will help the night to flow well. I chatted with our musician before the show and we created a simple flow of when he would play, how long and what breaks he would take.
He took it from their as far as his set list was concerned and even stopped to lead us in signing happy birthday along the way!
We gave guests about 45 minutes to enjoy connecting and grabbing food before the show started, which was a nice way to allow everyone a chance to enjoy each other first and then focus on the music.
How To make it Fun & Memorable
To make the concert memorable there are a few things you can do to make your home concert extra special for your guests:
Make sure to take plenty of photos throughout the concert. You can share them with your guests afterward, or create a photo album to remember the event.
Create a playlist
If you’re hosting a concert with one or even multiple performers, consider creating a playlist of their music beforehand. This can help get your guests excited about the performers and create a cohesive vibe throughout the night. Send a shirt playlist of a few of your favorite songs along to the guests with the invite like we did creates anticipation and excitement to see the show live.
If your guests are familiar with the music being played, encourage them to sing along. This can create a fun, interactive atmosphere and help everyone feel like they’re part of the show.
Tips and Tricks for Throwing a Great Home Concert
Here are a few additional tips and tricks to help you host a great home concert:
- Create a schedule: Make sure you have a schedule in place for the concert, including set times and breaks. This can help ensure that the concert runs smoothly and that your guests know what to expect.
- Have a backup plan: In case of bad weather or other unexpected issues, make sure you have a backup plan in place. This could be as simple as moving the concert indoors.
- Share the merch: Ask your artist ahead of time if they have merchandise they’d like to put out. You can buy something small (like a sticker) for each guest as a party favor & they can buy shirts, records etc if they want to support the musician even more
- End well: At the end of the night make sure your audience claps and thanks the musician, it’s no small feat to get in front of people and you want them to feel as blessed by the experience as you do!
It really was one of my favorite parties we’ve thrown so far and I’d highly recommend trying your hand at hosting a concert in your living room or backyard this season.