An online music festival was hosted by Special Event Services over Twitch and Youtube this weekend on June 26 and 17, featuring 10 different artists from around Greenville and other places in North Carolina, with proceeds going toward the charity Musicares.
The festival, called ClubHouse Live, was free of admission, and took place on Friday night from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. and Saturday night from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m., according to Matt Szczygiel, who does video edits for Gray Room Sessions, a weekly show featuring local singers and songwriters shot in the Special Event Services warehouse.
Any donations toward the festival went to the festival’s associated charity, Musicares, a non-profit organization that provides financial assistance to musical artists at a time of need. The donations are submitted through Pure Heart Ministries, Szczygiel said. Additional proceeds will go towards the performing artists as tips.
“We see it (the ClubHouse Live music festival) as an opportunity to provide North Carolina DJs who haven't been able to play at bars or clubs for the past few months, an opportunity to share their music for tips or for a good cause,” Szczygiel said.
Of the 10 performing artists, there was a variety of electronic music genres performed, such as Trap music, Electronica and Dubstep, Szczygiel said.
The festival featured music that appealed to many different types of people, Szczygiel said, and it benefitted the artists who hadn’t been able to perform in a while due to COVID-19.
“All DJs and musicians are hurting right now, so we wanted to showcase a variety. There's a little something for everyone. We also pointedly featured artists with an abundance of original content,” Szczygiel said.
Szczygiel said he believes it’s important to support local musicians and the music industry at this time, because many of them have been affected due to COVID-19, especially touring professionals and musicians who rely on their shows for income.
“I can't personally change the course of history, But I can do my part to bring NC (North Carolina) music back to the forefront of people's minds, maybe put a bit of change in these musicians' pockets, and spread good music and great talent in the process,” Szczygiel said.
The first night of the online festival had a great response from viewers, Szczygiel said, and it had about 730 people viewing the festival on Twitch and Youtube. He said the second night had 539 viewers.
“We see it as a giant success and plan on doing more with our core team. All I can say is we’re going bigger next time,” Szczygiel said.
Christian Mercado, a recent East Carolina University School of Communication alumnus, performed on Saturday night at 10 p.m. Mercado, who goes by the stage name Seemerc, said he heard about the festival from a few scouts around the Eastern North Carolina region, who were looking for artists with original content.
Mercado said he primarily performs music in the House genre, and also performs classic songs with his spin on it at events. He said he has been performing for three years, and he was happy to perform in the ClubHouse Live festival. Mercado said his performance on the second night was successful.
“ClubHouse Live was sponsored by Special Event Services, an extremely notable production, and touring company. With primarily bands on their roster, ClubHouse Live was an opportunity to venture into electronic music,” Mercado said.
Andy Underwood, an electronic artist based out of Charlotte, North Carolina, performed on Saturday night at 11 p.m., following Mercado.
Underwood said that he performs all sub genres within the Bass genre, such as Half Time, Drum and Bass, Neuro and Dubstep. He has been performing for five years under the stage name BroMosapien.
The online festival was held to highlight the music of the performing artists and make the audience feel like they are there in person, Underwood said.
“The festival (took) place for true style festivals with an actual stage rig to allow the viewers to feel like they are at an actual festival production,” Underwood said.
The festival featured talented artists from around North Carolina, Underwood said, and he believes the lineup for the event was great.