Despite the pandemic, the show must go on for live musicians. James Casey, longtime touring member of the Trey Anastasio Band, is launching Aux Chord, an online music venue offering ticketed livestream events to soften the blow of canceled gigs for artists and fans alike.
Back in February, Casey foresaw the pandemic’s potential to erase an entire year’s worth of concert dates for himself and other artists. He began brainstorming with his partner Ayla Cobb while quarantined in New York City, and with the help of web developer Stephen Small, they created Aux Chord: A Live Streaming Venue.
“The goal of Aux Chord is to supply a place for the music community to continue to grow and thrive, and supply a place for music fans to be able to see great live music with great picture and sound,” Casey explains. “I doubt we’re the first to do this, and we definitely won’t be the last, but hopefully this can be a positive thing for the artists at large.”
Aux Chord’s first event, a live showcase starring Casey, is Thursday, June 11 at 9 p.m. ET. Upcoming performers on the service include Jennifer Hartswick and Nick Cassarino, Natalie Cressman and Ian Faquini, Louis Cato and Erin Boyd. Tickets are available now at auxchord.live.
The site’s performances are behind a paywall, and musicians set their own prices and receive the majority of ticket revenues. The fees are nominal and transparent, allowing fans to support artists without fear of gouging or high overhead.
“Hopefully this can be a resource for musicians, especially independent artists, in a time where we honestly aren’t able to perform and do what we’ve been working towards our whole lives. But what we can do is these live streams and create art for people to consume, especially considering that everyone is going through a whole lot right now,” Casey said. “This isn’t like going live on Facebook or Instagram and busking. The platform is about elevating that experience and really performing for the people. We’re putting on a show.”