backofhouse

February 9th, 2021

#035

NOLA BANS DANCING

Today's read...6 minutes

New Orleans officials allow the return of live music, but don’t you dare sing or dance, why The Weeknd paid $7 million for his own Super Bowl performance, plus our Headliner tells us how the nitty-gritty of live events insurance can save you from even the oddest accidents.

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HAPPENINGS

Performing at the Super Bowl cost The Weeknd $7 million and he didn’t get paid a cent.

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UK officials reverse decision to charge live streaming fee for small-scale virtual events after intense backlash.

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Organizers for Milwaukee’s Summerfest, the US’s largest attended music festival, are optimistic about new date after postponing from June to September.

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Ticketing company CEO makes the case for requiring vaccinations to attend events, saying “our systems can read vaccination cards.”

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UK start-up company aims to verify identification and corresponding COVID test results for event-goers.

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Montreux Jazz Festival announces plans to stream all performances from its July 2021 event. Details and lineup to be announced soon.

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Nashville Music Center and San Mateo Event Center join a growing list of venues nationwide offering to host vaccination efforts.

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Rings, wristbands, and diamond bracelets -- as wearable payment accessories increase in popularity, more festivals may incorporate touchless options for on-site commerce.

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Long-awaited National Museum of African American Music opens in Downtown Nashville with great reviews.

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Gearing up for post-pandemic festivities? Check out these most anticipated venues in Canada. 

Source: Biz Bash Credit: Humanti Hotel Montreal

OPENERS

Restrictions Ease Around the World

Live music, full theaters, and NASCAR -- Are these events a sign of normalcy returning?

Source: Digital Music News Credit: Robson Hatsukami Morgan

"Show Me the [Insurance] Money!"

Live Nation joins Ralph Lauren, Cinemark, and other major companies in suing their insurance provider, Factory Mutual, for not paying the coverage of the billions of dollars of losses caused by the pandemic. The promoter purchased the Global Advantage All-Risk property policy that they claim "specifically designates communicable disease as a covered cause of loss." They have yet to receive any compensation from Factory Mutual who will likely argue that the coverage only applies to physical damage.

Cancellation Insurance Gives Much-Needed Flexibility

Following the announcement of the government event cancellation fund, several Dutch festivals have rescheduled. Their Liquicity Festival plans to return on July 16 - 18 and has incorporated a full refund and ticket swapping system to provide backout options for attendees no matter their reason. Additionally, two ‘trial festivals’ will take place in the Netherlands to test the effectiveness of different safety measures. Meanwhile, live events leaders in the UK pleaded for similar insurance from Parliament while also spearheading a movement to prevent the government from raising taxes on tickets. Conversely, the Indian government’s Union Budget will not provide the financial support the live event companies had hoped to receive.

HEADLINER

Taylor Shomaker has spent his entire career in the entertainment and live event industry beginning while in college at the University of Tennessee booking and producing shows for his fraternity’s philanthropic events with artists such as Dierks Bentley and Pat Green.

After graduating from the University of Tennessee, Taylor joined AC Entertainment; Live Nation’s Knoxville/Nashville based concert and festival promotions company best know as the founder of the Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival. While at AC Entertainment, Taylor gained experience in every aspect of the company, serving as the VP of operations, festival director, contracts & insurance manager, talent buyer, concert promoter, production manager, ticketing manager, security directory, festival risk & safety manager, festival operations manager, and project manager. These roles gave Taylor hands-on experience dealing with the challenges of the live music industry, and solidified his passion for navigating those issues with the safety and security of all fans, artists, and staff as the top priority. Taylor was an integral part of AC Entertainment’s transformation from independent promoter to becoming a part of Live Nation.

Taylor Shomaker

Do you get frustrated with Insurance and believe it is a necessary evil? Me too, that’s why I dove in head first to pull back the curtain and see what it really looks like without the clouds of confusion and misconceptions.  Let me share a little bit about why a festival director moved to risk management and what I learned.

Insurance can be a pain in the ass - why do we need it?

You have worked so hard to create your dream company, and now comes the discussion about protecting your dream.  Insurance can certainly seem daunting and overwhelming, but that can be overcome by finding an agent that knows your business because they have been in your shoes before.  Before jumping to risk management I was a concert and festival promoter for more than 12 years, and the experience I gained in that role gives me the boots-on-the-ground knowledge to make your insurance program easy, efficient, and comprehensive.  My goal is to be a true risk advisor partner you can trust and rely on to take the headache of insurance away. 

Have you ever been staring at a weather report for your festival or event and been stressed about incoming storms?

When I was a festival director, I used to spend hours looking at weather reports and talking to meteorologists.  In the festivals I managed we had evacuations, cancellations, near misses, and everything in between.  How you react and knowing that your insurance policies in place are strong and comprehensive allows you to make decisions more freely and with less stress.  

We had to cancel a festival in the Southeast the 3rd day of load-in because a hurricane was working its way inland and there was no way to build the site and have the show.  I immediately knew we were going to be okay because I had worked so hard on the front end to put a good cancellation policy in place.

We have had evacuations at a moments notice and again because I had worked hard before the festival ever took place to get good policies in place, I was able to make quick decisions and move fast to make sure everyone was safe and not be concerned with the financial impact of the evacuation

I know it is not the fun or the sexy part of the job but it is imperative for the financial strength and longevity of your festival or company.  I always found it to be a frustrating experience so I moved into my current role to make it easier, more efficient, and have a little fun with it.

How is insurance generally priced? (by event size, location, history, etc.)

The insurance rating basis is dependent on the type of company.  For instance, a site operations company is based on gross sales per year, a festival is based on total attendance and genre of music, festival cancellation insurance can be based on time of year, geographic location, and other factors.  History is always a consistent factor with all types of companies. 

What are the different types of insurance available to events and briefly what do they cover: General Liability, Cancellation, Inland Marine, etc. 

You should discuss all policy options with your risk advisor to determine what it looks like to provide full and comprehensive coverage for your company’s risk profile.  It is imperative that each company thinks of their insurance program as an asset for your company and not an annoyance or nuisance.  Trusting your risk advisor to understand what your company does, how you do it, and help you look around the corner and into the future to make sure you are fully protected.

Back of House Question Of The Week

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SIDE STAGE

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▶️ Radar Artist Management needs a part-time Management Assistant in Nashville, TN.

▶️ Secretly Group is looking for a Catalog Sales and Marketing Manager to develop digital and physical campaigns for their catalog in Bloomington, IN, Brooklyn, or Los Angeles.

▶️ Musician-Focused Journalist (Remote) Digital Music News is seeking a musician-focused journalist to cover relevant topics for DIY and indie musicians.

▶️ Artists to Watch: Phoebe Bridgers stuns during her ‘SNL’ Debut.

▶️ It’s the 50th anniversary of Janis Joplin’s Pearl! Celebrate by entering Consequence of Sound’s giveaway!

▶️ Become a Certified Festival and Events Executive through the International Festivals and Events Association.

▶️ Malcolm & Marie starring Zendaya premiered on Netflix receiving mixed reviews from critics and fans.

TUNE IN

February 8 - 12: Check out these speakers at the 8th annual Digital Entertainment World online conference, which is an event focused on creating or monetizing digital entertainment content.

February 10: Livestream Chelsea Cutler and Jeremy Zucker performing their new EP brent ii for the first time!

February 12: Lindsay Ell live stream concert benefiting Music Health Alliance, Crew Nation and the Roadies Clinic. 

February 17: Agency EA’s 2021 Experiential Trend Report Virtual Presentation and Panel Discussion. Learn how Google, Intel, Verizon Media and Samsung assessed market changes in 2020 to determine how to forge their way forward, hosted successful virtual event programs amid COVID-19, and what learnings are influencing their shift back to hybrid, are making predictions (and plans) for the future of experiential and event marketing.

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