You know what doesn’t rock? Missing a concert by your favorite band. So today Live Nation is publicly launching its Concert Calendar, a Facebook app that pulls in music and comedy gig listings from Ticketmaster (which merged with Live Nation in 2010) as well as 75 other ticketers.
The calendar offers concert recommendations based on your Facebook Likes and streaming service listening habits from Spotify and other apps, as well as the shows your friends are going to. You even earn Concert Cash for discounts on tickets and merchandise just for visiting.
As a huge live music fan, I’ve been waiting for a product like this that can accurately recommend me concerts, and honestly it’s ridiculous someone hadn’t already built it. Live Nation was very smart to feed in other ticketers it partners with, as that makes it good enough to become your destination for concert discovery. Oh, and it will definitely boost Live Nation ticket sales.
How Exactly Does It Rock?
All you do is visit the app and give it some Facebook data permissions, and you’re instantly shown a calendar of the nearby concerts you’re most likely to go to. You can also search by artist, venue, or genre. Hover over a show and you’ll see which friends are RSVP’d to the gig’s Facebook event or why you got the recommendation (You listen to them on MOG, you Like a similar artist).
You can Like shows you won’t attend to teach its algorithm, and even add your own band’s shows or import your Facebook events to unify your calendar. I suggested Live Nation surface those self-added to my friends, and now that functionality is being coded in.
Click through to a concert and you can RSVP, buy tickets, invite friends, visit Ticketmaster to see where friends are sitting, or share the show to Facebook. These actions, regular visits, and answering daily trivia questions all earn you points, leaderboard spots, badges, and Concert Cash that knock dollars off your ticket or merch purchases. In just a few visits you could get a $10 discount.
Why This Concert Calendar Rocks Harder
When I say the product kicks ass, I speak from experience. I see well over 100 bands play each year, and even make my own crummy Google Doc concert calendar. I’ve long been disappointed by other concert discovery methods.
There’s plenty of unpersonalized concert lists like Pollstar and local sites that are filled with noise. Finally, smarter apps like, SeatGeek‘s Columbus, JamBase, iConcertCal, Songkick, and Bandsintown recommend based on your iTunes, streaming services, last.fm, Likes, or friends, but none combine all these suggestions in a nice graphical interface. ConcertCrowd is a new favorite of mine, as you can sample music of the bands, but it only works if you’ve Liked all your favorite artists.
Live Nation’s Concert Calendar get it right, pulling in all the Facebook data it can. It’s been in testing for a few months with the average visitor spending two minutes and 30 seconds per visit — plenty of time to browse the calendar and buy some tickets. The design is little rough, especially when it tries to show multiple shows on the same day. The biggest problem, though, its that the app concert listings are completely comprehensive.
While some of the biggest ticket sites beyond Ticketmaster such as Paciolan and Live Nation subsidiary Ticketweb are on-board, it misses some smaller shows. It also doesn’t have access to shows by Ticketfly, a rapidly growing ticketing software provider that’s been signing deals with lots of venues recently and has the potential disrupt Ticketmaster.
In a friendly move that could erase some of the public hatred for Ticketmaster’s service fees, Live Nation’s VP of Social Media Gretchen Fox tells me it’d be happy to integrate Ticketfly’s listings and send them traffic if the competitor provided its concert feed.
For now it doesn’t have every show, but if I had to suggest one place to find out about shows for the average Joe, Live Nation’s Concert Calendar would be it.