My recent discussion of DIYgigs.com returned some suggestions for similar web services. Here I briefly discuss four sites, BandSurfing, Indie on the Move, Getagig Info and Sonicbids, focusing on their usefulness for indie musicians booking their own gigs.
- BandSurfing is still in process but the emphasis on connecting bands and people booking shows is central to the concept. Here's a basic demo of the service and the pricing once you get past three free monthly "plugs".
- Getagig Info is a free site with a UK focus but a search for London venues seemed surprisingly short. Since you can submit gig requests to venues via a form on Getagig, it may cut through some noise with promoters who've registered for the service.
- Indie on the Move is clearly focused on the United States with its interactive map of US venues. It seemed the most useful of all the sites for booking gigs at clubs in the States with a full range of free options. Reviews are attributed to account names so anonymity is an option for artists rating and reviewing clubs.
- Sonicbids is probably the most well-known of this bunch and their listings were primarily focused on special events such as festivals with opportunities not found on the other sites. Though one can identify some venues that book musical acts on an ongoing basis, it's not really set up for that. SonicBids facilitates the application process and is available with two subscription levels.
We have some promising resources but none are at a point where they can clearly dominate the field, though Indie on the Move seems closest. The proprietary application platforms do show promise of cutting through some noise so their growth is worth watching. Overall musicians are still faced with stitching things together on their own.