I hate concerts at arena-type venues. The seats I can afford are usually in the nose-bleed section, which means you don't so much listen to the music as watch it on the giant-screen TV, making me wonder why I spent $75 to do something I could have done for free at home.
On the other hand, I love concerts at small venues like Mississippi Studios. It's like listening to world-class talent while sitting in someone's living room. And then I went to my first house concert, a relatively new and increasingly popular way to listen to live music in a comfortable, intimate setting where ticket prices are low and musicians get to keep more money than they would if they had to pay middlemen.
The other night I went to my first Hollywood House Concert, a series put together by neighborhood resident Matt Miner and his wife, chef Sasha Kaplan. They book musicians, often local but now starting to draw national talent, you reserve your ticket with an e-mail, send money and show up on the appointed evening at their very comfortable and welcoming home. And after the concert, there's a casual buffet that Sasha composes from local, seasonal ingredients.
It makes for a wonderful evening, and now Matt is taking his model public by organizing concerts for other individuals who would like to start having music in their homes. We can only hope the idea catches on!
Details: Hollywood House Concerts. E-mail Matt for concert schedule and details.