Here’s a confession: While I love approaching interesting people to start conversations, sometimes I like it when they approach me. When I want interesting people to come talk to me I will wear a shirt that prompts a discussion.
Often that will be the Amoeba Records shirt (with the logo pictured above) I bought the first time I visited San Francisco. Amoeba Records is one of biggest remaining record stores in the country and the reason it has survived while others perished is because of the experience they present to those that visit. Walking into Amoeba is a dream for music fans. There are rows after rows of new and used CDs and vinyl. To the far right is a large stage that has been graced by numerous legends playing in-store performances. What you experience at Amoeba cannot be replicated digitally (though I’m sure may will try).
That’s precisely why people engage with me when they see my shirt. They want to bond with someone over a positive shared experience. Without a shared experience, the shirt would not be nearly as powerful a social object.
So far, two people have conversed with me today about Amoeba. One recounted the thrill of walking into the store for the first time and how he would love to fly back just to visit. The other asked me if I knew of anything similar to Amoeba in Boston and we both talked about our favorite music shops here.
If I want to be (somewhat) antisocial I make sure to wear a plain t-shirt with nothing written on it.
Nic Adler, owner of The Roxy, speaking at the SF MusicTech Summit in San Francisco, CA
Boston is a major city for live music and technological innovation so it is only natural that there will soon be a convergence. Social media forever changed the modes of communications and the techniques for concert promotion. Over the last 15 years there has been a power shift from a time when the major labels told music lovers what to buy to a new era where the customers became the voice that influenced purchases. The revolution was powered by social platforms from the Facebook wall to the Amazon reviews sections. It quickly became unacceptable for communications to be one sided and soon many businesses started having open dialogues with their customers. The competitors that did not seek to build a relationship with customers often saw business slip away. Relationships are all that keep us together in an increasingly global way of life.