A Concert In Your Living Room — D.I.Y. House Shows

Matt Kozial, a singer-songwriter from Linden, N.J. wasn’t sure what to do. Even though he was scheduled to perform that night in Brooklyn, he couldn’t get in the venue – someone forgot to give him the apartment number.

Kozial wasn’t playing just any show that night; he was playing in someone’s living room. These concerts – called “house shows” by those who book and attend them – are part of a resurging music scene called “D.I.Y.,” characterized by a “do-it-yourself” mentality. The concerts aren’t just held in apartments. According to Barrie Cohen, who books D.I.Y. shows with a partner using the name City Lights NYC, any non-traditional venue will do. This includes lofts, warehouses, churches and community centers.

“It’s pretty big,” she said. Brooklyn has a number of D.I.Y. spaces, she said, as does Philadelphia and New Brunswick, N.J. There are also some in Connecticut.

“Every show I’ve played in Brooklyn was a house show,” said Evan Weiss, who also performed that night under the stage name Into It Over It. He said the D.I.Y. scene was fading until about two years ago, when a new generation discovered it. He said that every major city in the country had its own version of this environment.

Learn more about this music scene and get a glimpse of what a house show looks like by checking out the pictures in the slideshow below:

About Lisha Arino

Contact Lisha Arino at arino@motthavenherald.com
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