When you think about what it’s like to be in a band, you probably think sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll.
However, having played in quite a serious band — or at least a band that took itself quite seriously — I think schlepping it around London playing in half-empty venues, continually having to recruit a new drummer, and spending too much time organising evenings spent in a hot, sweaty and dingy rehearsal studio.
And, of course, friendship. In fact, to this day I can honestly say that being in a band provided some of the best times I’ve ever had.
With that said, the inevitable downsides of band life could have been made considerably less if something like Meet & Jam existed back in my day. The U.K. startup bills itself as a musicians network and studio booking engine. It enables users to meet other musicians, showcase their talent, and get together for a jam or form a band.
In addition (and at the core of its business model) Meet & Jam offers a recording and rehearsal studio booking engine — online software it eventually plans to white label. The company takes a ten percent commission from bookings made through the site.
Specifically, Meet & Jam aims to plug the gap left by the decline of classified ads (the legacy classified ad publication Loot was where we perpetually advertised for drummers).
“[I] typed ‘Meet & Jam’ into Google in the hope of finding some great local musicians to jam with, but there was no site that gave musicians a platform to showcase their talents or to meet,” says co-founder Nick Ford-Young, explaining the inspiration behind the site.
“Meet & Jam allows musicians to browse accountable profiles, find others, search by location, genre and instruments, check out video and audio, be found and connect. We have also developed a revolutionary way for them to book rehearsal and recording studios online,” he adds.
With regards the latter, studios are given access to the startup’s custom-built studio calendar software, so they can take online bookings. The idea is to help them sell unfilled space, with the draw that they can use the Meet & Jam software to manage all of their bookings.
On the issue of competitors, Ford-Young says that there is “no one quite like” Meet & Jam, but does name-check classified ad sites such as BandMix, which charges musicians to message.
“There are of course the major social networks (Facebook etc.), but we are focused exclusively on building the perfect platform for musicians. More than that, at Meet & Jam we are determined to bring musicians together in the real world: we hold live nights and, with our cutting-edge calendar software, we get musicians making music in the studio,” he says.