Like big-name acts, local musicians turning to at-home streaming shows

Adam Carter
May 01, 2020 - 5:15 pm
Jason Fladager

Hoodphellas, a local band that plays the music of Vermont jam-band Phish, gather on the porch of a home in Edina. 

But something is missing. 

 "Nobody is there.  There is no audience in front of you.  You're playing, and there is no applause.  You kind of have to imagine it in your head."

Jason Fladager is the driving force behind the music. Fladager was a founding member of the Big Wu, and he's been playing music for audiences in the Twin Cities and beyond for 25 years. 

Even with no audience because of social distancing measures, he says the music must go on, as a means of communication, and as a means of medicine.

"If you are able to get out of your head for two minutes, tune into a show, have that affect you in some way. It's kind of like a healing thing. So, yeah, I think it's as necessary as medicine."

Fladager, like so many other musicians, is still bringing his music to people through live-streamed shows on his Facebook page.  

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What's been amazing to Fladager is the response they get once the music starts playing.

"You look on your computer, and you see that there are 83 people maybe watching the show.  And it's like 'wow' the last time we played the Whiskey Junction there were 10 people there, and we walked with like $10 each."

The fans online aren't paying a cover charge, but they are pitching in for the music through Fladager's Venmo account. 

"I think people recognize that musicians are struggling, and the entertainment industry is struggling with the inability to gather in large groups.  People have been generous, and we've been doing ok.  It's kind of fun."

Hoodphellas will stream another two-set show Saturday, May 2nd at 2 pm on their Facebook page.  Fladager and vocalist Jon Sullivan will stream their two-man basement show at 8 pm Saturday. 

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