Saturday, 10 October 2009

Songkick Meetup

I'm so tired. I was up at 4:30am this morning to get to work, it's barely a life, and last night I was running non-stop since I finished work. A desperate sprint to the underground station to get across town for a users meetup at Songkick Towers.

Songkick, as I've previously spieled on about is this huge websitey database of almost every gig ever, you can log on and check off which shows you've been to. According to Pete Smith, one of the founders, they're all gig geeks and they want the website to make going to gigs on the same level as going to the cinema. Its an interesting take on the phenomenom, and I guess I've embraced it, probably averaging more gigs than cinema trips over the years.

But I don't see the gig-going experience like that, I'd compare it more to football. I've only seen Man United play once, I'm not much of a football fan. But I was reading highbrow blogoir Charles Crawford this morning, he was rattling on about how the invention of broadcast football...
..meant that there were two categories of sports fans. Those who had to make their way to the event and pay to watch it in person. And everyone else who got to see it in effect for free via TV.
I reckon its the same deal with music now, recorded/broadcast music is essentially free, you don't pay to listen to the radio or spotify, and there are those of us who make our way to the gigs and pay to watch the bands in person.

Enough pontificating, on with the meetup writeup blogposts...

We'd been issued with name badges and name clouds of people in the room who we may have seen at other gigs. So there was much wandering around looking for familiar-ish faces and people who's username's we'd seen online.

There was free beer and cakes and crisps and vodka and stuff and badges, there was a short presentation of new and exciting features they're hoping to add to the site, I'm not quite comfortable blabbing on about every on my blog, but later I was chatting with a fellow songkicker about how difficult it would be to pick your own Top Five favourite gigs of all time, torturously so even.

And if such a thing top five gigs had to be shown, I'd want it to be computer generated, some kind of algorithm that picks the top five gigs out of every one you've been to, not necessarily the biggest gigs, but some kind of complicated formular. My mind's been boggling about it all day at the factory today, and what I figure would be neat, is a rotating selection of different top fives, every time you click refresh it changes the algorithm, so you never know what it's going to be:-
  • Top five biggest gigs
  • Oldest five gigs
  • Top five biggest attended shows by your favourite band
  • Top five gigs at your top venue
  • Top five shows by bands beginning with 'B'
  • Top five shows with one word band names
  • Top five shows biggest shows this year
  • Top five shows you went to on your own
  • Top five shows outside your safety zone
  • ... and so on
I don't know about you, but I'd be clicking refresh for hours and hours.

Then again, mind boggling some more, how would you choose your Top Five gigs? Well, by comparing one to another. Was Cast at The Boardwalk better than The Loves at The Cavern? Were Friends of the Bride at The Buffalo Bar better than The Gresham Flyers at Jamm? It would be a seperate corner of the website, but it just pings up a load of these choices, and after a while the alogrithm knows enough to say my favourite gig was The Just Joans at The Enterprise.

What would be a tiny bit more interesting would be if other people could pick your top gig, so anyone visiting your profile gets to chose which show was better, even if they've never heard of the bands. Nathan Persad at the 13th Note better than The Mighty Sunch at The Captain's Rest?

Anyhoo, I digress again, I ought not to, I need to sleep.

As is my wont in these meetup blogposts, here's a list of people who were there, and for the sake of being fiercely competitve, they are listed by the number og gigs they're been to.
  1. soapcompany - 1066 past events
  2. triturus - 353 past events
  3. bootzilla - 308 past events
  4. bumblebee - 305 past events
  5. bookarooble - 218 past events
  6. dawnkitten - 191 past events
  7. outspaced - 171 past events
  8. AnthonyChalmers - 164 past events
  9. natalie_shaw - 137 past events
  10. brightslumber - 121 past events
  11. saleandro - 118 past events
  12. gideon - 115 past events
  13. ian - 103 past events
  14. kaz.patwa - 103 past events
  15. jesstherese - 96 past events
  16. mash1982 - 90 past events
  17. michelle - 89 past events
  18. deathwarmedover - 83 past events
  19. EmilyS - 64 past events
  20. phil - 44 past events
  21. gtvone - 43 past events
  22. ssaint - 32 past events
  23. Craigtmackenzie - 18 past events
  24. funky - 9 past events
  25. marc - 6 past events
Apologies to anyone I've missed, my bad. I haven't included myself, my profile's here if you're passing through.

Here's everyone graphed and broken into percentiles.

I knew you would.

They had whiteboards for people to add suggestions, features they'd like added and stuff they don't like. I scrawled a couple of things, rambling and misguided, I think if I was thinking more clearly, I'd have written 'rank'. For every datum, I'd like to know the rank compared to the rest of the database. Number of photies added, how does that compare to everyone else; number of gigs a band has played, how does that compare to every other band; number of past concerts at a venue how does that compare to every other venue.

Sure, there's a bit of that rankinginess around, the site, but I want more of it. And aure, it'll give the game away for how big the database is an how many people are signed up, but like when technorati does it for blogs, it demonstrates how authoritative the datum is.

Hmm, where was I? ah yeas. I drank too much, chatted to lots of people, but not half as many as I wanted to. I had to leave.

It was a bit of a frantic sprint afterwards too, to the Buffalo Bar to catch The Primitives playing Twee As Fuck. I bumped into Dave from the Just Joans in the queue, down from Glasgow. Sadly my night was cut short as I had to leave before the headline act in order to get the last train home and get to work the next day.

Anyhoo, looking at the songkick page for the gig and the seven people who were there, they're mostly hardcore gig-going songkickers:-
  1. illandancient - 529 past events
  2. OddBox - 343 past events
  3. darve - 204 past events
  4. RockerRosehip - 116 past events
  5. rewsan - 106 past events
  6. emml - 105 past events
  7. RorySoTough - 1 past events

1 comment:

  1. Wow. That's my attempt to express awe at your data hungry number crunching styles! Sorry we didn't meet. Next time.