Vevo, YouTube Start a Concert Series; First Up, Arcade Fire

arcade fire

Vevo and YouTube will be pushing deeper into the live music scene with a five-part concert series that will be streamed live online. The new “Unstaged” live music series will host performances from major artists like John Legend and the Roots, and will have interactive features, like being able to switch camera angles and vote on encore performances at the show.

The first concert in the series, which is sponsored by American Express, will be streamed live on August 5 from Madison Square Garden with headliner Arcade Fire. The band will be performing music from its new album, Suburbs, which will be released earlier that week in the U.S. The concert will appear live on the band’s YouTube page, with an on-demand stream of the concert and highlight clips available after the show.

YouTube has already streamed a number of live music events online, including a U2 live concert, the Hope for Haiti benefit event, and an Alicia Keys Benefit Concert. YouTube and Vevo have also collaborated on live music streams before, including last month’s official World Cup opening concert, but this is the first time they’re producing a live concert series together.

For Vevo, this is a way to help build momentum and differentiate its service, according to CEO Rio Caraeff. In a phone interview last week, Caraeff said the online music video distributor would look to produce more live events in the weeks and months to come. “Live events are very important to differentiate the service,” he said. “We don’t want to just sit on a bunch of videos and call it a day.”

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