Words by Sarah Karkoura
JingleFest began in 2011 as a virtual concert and live interview for musicholics. Each Saturday of December, we bring about 1-2 artists to be interviewed and perform some songs on a live video chat website called Stickam. Just like everything we do, JingleFest is designed for the fans. There are so many fans who live too far away to watch their favorite artist perform in person, so this gives them a highly similar experience. Select fans are lucky enough to win VIP from us, which serves as a virtual meet and greet pass. Before the public show, the VIP winners get to talk to the artist in a private chat room. This is an amazing opportunity for fans to ask those questions they’ve always wanted an answer for or to just be able to talk to their role models. During the public show they get to use their webcams on a sidebar which often get them shout outs from the artist. We try to make the interviews as fun and informative as possible. We know fans want to know as much as they can about the artist’s interests and personality so we get this information for them through fun, original questions. In many of the shows there is also a fan question session that allows the viewers to take over the interview. The live songs are typically performed acoustic to show the pure, raw talent the artists have. The artists perform original songs or covers to show their music style, talent, and unique spin on popular songs.
Not only is JingleFest a chance for fans to connect with their favorite artists, but it is also a chance for music enthusiasts to discover new artists. After every show, we always get feedback and it’s often people telling us that they became a fan of an artist by watching our Stickam.
JingleFest leaves a memory with almost every viewer. At each show you’re either blown away by the artist’s talent, humor, or both! Even though every single act this year was absolutely amazing and memorable, I have to say that I was blown away by Spencer Sutherland’s vocal abilities and found myself laughing hysterically during Late Nite Reading’s show. During Late Nite Reading’s show, band member Brady Suzhaj told his iPhone to call him “cum dumpster”! I’ve heard it is now an inside joke that is still being laughed about in their fandom!
JingleFest is the most important event in the Musicholics4U agenda. We think about it all year and ask ourselves: how can we make it better?; what genres should we cater to?; who should we have perform next?; what can we do to make it bigger?; what do musicholics want to see? It’s a constant project we work on. The minute we ended the This Is All Now JingleFest show on December 29th, we were already on to planning JingleFest 2013. JingleFest is pretty much Musicholics4U’s virtual Warped Tour and just as fans have a lot of say in different aspects of Warped, we want fans to have a lot of say in JingleFest. This year we had Jaxn Odell, Late Nite Reading, This Is All Now, Spencer Sutherland, and At Long Last as the acts of JingleFest. Viewers of any of these shows can leave us feedback by filling out a survey on our website to help us make JingleFest even more customized to our audience’s interests. We also ask viewers to let us know who they want to see perform on JingleFest again. Jaxn Odell performed on our first annual JingleFest and due to high demand, he performed again on JingleFest 2012.
What can you expect in JingleFest 2013? Everything bigger and better! We’re planning to have more diverse genres in JingleFest 2013 so that all musicholics can love JingleFest, no matter what their musical interests. Our goal is to make the line up so grand and full of surprises that each fan will walk away thinking, “that was the best night of my life”.