Chances are good that 80% of the people in the crowd at your next show will have video cameras with them. Of course, I mean the video cameras in their pockets: smartphones. Let your fans help you make a video!

In 2004, the Beastie Boys supplied 50 camcorders to 50 fans, and asked them to document their sold out show at Madison Square Garden. They then edited the footage together to create the film Awesome; I F#$%^&’ Shot That! 

In 2009, a Radiohead-approved, fan-shot concert movie was released that captured a show in Prague where 50 people shot footage on their phones. Then Radiohead supplied the master recording from that concert so their collaborators could sync up to the edited video.

At this point in your career, you might not be able to convince 50 people in the audience to shoot an hour’s worth of footage on their phone. You might only have 50 people TOTAL in the audience. But you can still ask them to help you do something fun: pick a single song and tell them that you want them to shoot video of your performance; then give them an email to send it to or a site where they can upload the footage, and follow up with everyone who contributed when you’ve edited the live video. Encourage them to share the work they helped create with their friends. You might want to put their names in the credits at the end, too, just so they can prove to their friends that they were there when it all went down.

-Chris R. at CD Baby