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Tips for Hosting a House Concert


Text © Cindy Muir. Photo © Jeff Thompson.
Kelly McGuire house concert hosted at “Muir Manor”

Tips for Hosting a House Concert

When my husband and I first saw our house, it only took about five minutes to decide it was definitely for us. The most striking feature was the expansive deck and pool in the back yard. It wasn’t very long before I started envisioning just where a Trop Rock performer might perform – the first dream of a House Concert began to emerge.

The road to hosting a House Concert began by first having guests over who are House Concert veterans… we asked for opinions on where the band would set up, speculated how many could attend and validated that there was adequate parking space on our street. Not long after that, it was time to make connection with a musician and start to work a date into a tour schedule.

We were able to collaborate with Kelly McGuire and planned a Sunday afternoon/evening event. Everyone who attended paid a nominal fee and brought a side dish to go along with a hamburger supper. They all brought lawn chairs, their beverages of choice, and most enjoyed dips in the pool before the concert. Usually, our group eats before the music starts, but since Kelly played on a Sunday, we had him play a long set, then took an hour to enjoy the hamburgers and other goodies, then listened to the last part of the concert.

We believe that a key ingredient to a successful house concert is the audience. The musicians are singer/ songwriters and a great audience is full of attentive listeners who are quiet and truly listen to the songs being performed. Trop Rock artists are most appreciative of this kind of audience.

Also, if the artist has merchandise to sell, it’s very helpful to have a designated table and “seller,” so that there is some extra income from CD sales and t shirts, hats, etc. Attendees may not be familiar with the House Concert artist and this gives them the chance to purchase music from a new favorite musician!

Our first House Concert was a great success, with almost 80 people in attendance. We’ve made friends with a well-known musician and hope to have another House Concert event at “Muir Manor” very soon!


  • Work with the musician to determine the per person fee or suggested donation
  • Ensure you have adequate parking
  • Promote your House Concert and ask for RSVPs to plan accordingly
  • Encourage attendees to bring a chair and their favorite beverages
  • Determine if it’ll be pot-luck and/or provide food (not all house concerts have food)
  • Encourage listening to get the most out of discovering or learning more about the artist and music
  • Ask for a volunteer to help sell the musician’s merchandise
  • Be mindful of any noise ordinances or neighbors especially if the music goes late into the evening
  • If the musician is traveling, the host or attendee often provides a spare bedroom for the night

Let’s hear your experiences! Share your tips below in the comments section.

Sharing is Appreciated!

Cris Baker

Sunday 21st of September 2014

Hi guys! I am the editor for the LAPHC newsletter and would like to publish an edited version of this article in the up coming issue. Would that be OK? Let me know!

Tammy Camp

Sunday 21st of September 2014

Hi Cris, Well sure, that would be awesome! All we ask is for you to include attribution along the lines of "Find the full article and more Trop Rock lifestyle articles in Trop Rockin' Magazine at" Thanks! Tammy

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