Have you ever been to a concert and realized that your fellow audience members aren't as into the show as much as you were?
Well, back in 2009, Rafe Offer and Rocky Start were getting frustrated with the concert scene in London, so they decided to invite a couple of friends over and bring in a few musicians for an intimate experience. That evening was a hit and led to the founding of Sofar, "a global, grassroots network of artists, hosts, and guests," which is making its debut in Greenport on Saturday, December 16.
"Sofar Sounds is currently in over 370 cities worldwide," explained Sarah Lipman, Sofar's Global Head of Communications. "The majority of our locations, like Long Island, are run by volunteers who are passionate about the work Sofar is doing and the community we are building. Greenport is an especially exciting place for us as it is our first show in Long Island."
What makes Sofar unique is that both the venues and performers are kept secret until right before the show. Locations range from private rooftops to living rooms to stores and concertgoers even have to wait until they've arrived at the secret location to learn who they'll be seeing. The inaugural Greenport show will feature three different acts.
"The frequency depends on various factors like Sofar's popularity, artist availability and the bandwidth of the city team," Lipman noted. "In volunteer locations like Long Island, there are typically one or two shows per month."
While there's no opener or headliner, Sofar has presented some big names in the past - like Ed Sheeran
and Bastille. "Sofar provides a platform for emerging and established artists alike to connect with an engaged audience. We are really proud of the wide variety of artists in our community who span music genres," she said. "Most recently we were privileged to partner with Amnesty International on Give a Home, a global day of live music events to benefit refugee. Sofar shows took place in community members' homes. The day featured 1,000 musicians will perform at over 300 concerts in more than 200 cities globally. This allows us to continue on in our mission and ability to support artists around the world."
Since musicians can apply to be a part of Sofar, many of the smaller cities see emerging and established local talent. "We are so excited about this expansion to Long Island and to host shows throughout the New Year and into 2018 on Long Island," Lipman expressed. "We want to continue to expand our community and provide a platform for Long Island's vibrant arts scene far and wide."
So how does one get invited to this exclusive gig? They have to create a profile on the website and then apply to attend the show. If selected, admission is $15. But, be advised that since it's all about the music, there's no talking or texting during sets. Guests can arrive between 7:30 and 7:55 p.m., and the event is BYOB.
For more information, visit www.sofarsounds.com.
Nicole is the Editor-in-Chief of Hamptons.com where she focuses on lifestyle, nightlife, and mixology. She grew up in the Hamptons and currently resides in Water Mill. www.hamptons.com