Halifax’s Side Door Platform Brings Independent Artists to South By South West | Arts + Culture | Halifax, Nova Scotia


IIt’s depressing but it’s a fact: every night a band is on the road *without* playing, it’s a hemorrhage of money. This is what makes touring complicated and difficult. How to move from one city to another without falling into the red?

Since 2017, the Halifax-founded online/Airbnb concert platform Side Door has been solving this problem by connecting artists to alternative venues so that suddenly the stretch between Halifax and, say, Montreal, is an opportunity rather than a a financial handicap. If anywhere – from a bowling alley to your living room – can be a music venue, cities that lack venues (like ours) have a chance to attract more live music and touring becomes more accessible. .

During the pandemic, when touring came to a halt, Side Door moved from domestic music industry notice to international buzz by creating an interface for live broadcasts.

Now that’s helping revive the in-person show. Earlier this month, the platform announced its partnership with Texas mega-festival South by Southwest, its biggest venture to date. “It can be difficult for artists to pay the fees to access SXSW, let alone generate interest in their showcases. In partnership with SXSW, Side Door will work with selected artists and their teams to organize shows in Side Door ‘Spaces’ on their way to Austin, amplifying their journey by pairing them with photographers and videographers at every stop on the tour,” says a press release, citing trending acts like Status/Non-Status (formerly known as WHOOP-Szo) and Bad Waitress among the acts involved.

The tour concludes with an official artist showcase at the festival on March 18.


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