Want to have dinner with some really cool indie musicians and then watch exclusive live performances? That’s what Baristaville’s husband and wife producers Martin and Jude Folkman had in mind when they hatched the idea of the new series of eight ½-hour video episodes called Grooveable Feast.
Folkman and Folkman — who’ve headed up The Independent Music Awards for the past ten years — created this online program to offer viewers a “fly-on-the-wall” perspective, as singer-songwriter host Richard Julian conducts intimate, freewheeling and engaging conversations with Suzanne Vega, Somi, Josh Ritter, Hoots & Hellmouth (pictured above), Amy Correia, Dirtfoot, Jim Campilongo and Jesse Harris.
According to Martin Folkman, the idea was born over a casual dinner in May 2009, before an Independent Music Awards event at Symphony Space, when several artists chatted about their own personal experiences. After the dinner, the idea was hatched to develop a format that allowed musicians to tell the stories of their careers, influences, trials and tribulations.
“Musicians have to work so hard at marketing themselves, constantly — both on stage and off. They often remain in their public persona, and people don’t really know who they are,” said Folkman. “This series allows viewers to peek through a keyhole, and see the real people behind the music.” He added, as an example, that the band Hoots & Hellmouth didn’t notice the economic downturn because they had been living in one of their own for so long.
As host, Julian chats with each artist or band, and then watches with the viewer as they perform in the same intimate “dinner with a friend” setting, each from a different NY restaurant. A new episode debuts every other Wednesday. They’ve aired Suzanne Vega (at right with Julian), so far. View it here.
Folkman suggests viewers watch the episodes in full-screen for maximum “hi-fi” enjoyment. The show also streams on Facebook.