Audience Participation Appreciation Post: Galactic’s TRL & UM ValUMtines Day Poll

Over the past few years, a few bands and promoters have come up with a number of innovative ways to generate interest in concerts by giving the audience a chance to influence the performance. Whether it was the Disco Biscuits letting fans “Spin The Wheel” to determine what song gets played on a Thursday night in Sayreville, NJ or Steely Dan letting ticketholders’ votes determine the setlist for Internet Request Nights, audience participation gives consumers more bang for their buck and a stake in the action. The trend continues with Galactic’s Throwdown Request Live spots and Umphrey’s McGee’s ValUMtines Day Song Poll.


Galactic’s extensive Winter Tour features shows in Philadelphia and NYC with Tea Leaf Green and shows with Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe in Missoula, St. Louis and Denver. At each show, Galactic will team up with their co-bill partners for a special Supergroup performance called Throwdown Request Live (TRL). Fans can vote on what this supergroup group plays from a list of six songs the bands chose. For the Galactic/TLG gigs the TRL song choices include So Lonely by The Police, I Want You Back by the Jackson 5 and Starman by David Bowie. For the Galactic/KDTU gigs the TRL song choices include Burning Down The House by the Talking Heads, (I’m A) Road Runner by Junior Walker and The Weight by The Band.


For Umphrey’s McGee’s upcoming Valentine’s Day show at Rams Head Live in Baltimore, the band has teamed up with promoter Walther Productions to give fans a chance to pick a new cover for UM to bust out that evening. Each song on the ballot is about romance in some form including Think I’m In Love by Beck, I Will Possess Your Heart by Death Cab For Cutie, I Am Trying to Break Your Heart by Wilco and Love Bites by Def Leppard. There’s so much competition for entertainment dollars these days with the terrible state of the economy making things even worse. Bands and promoters must continue to come up with innovative ways to engage concertgoers if they want to draw fans to their events.

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