I was up and as luck would have it I was finally able to catch the Wednesday night show at THE NEW ROOF hosted by Lingual Markus. THE NEW ROOF hosts shows twice a week on Monday and Wednesday nights.
This place always seems like 'THE place to be'. You will never find anything but spectacular
performers here and well trained hosts that make you feel welcome as if... they were expecting you :)
Folks dress to impress when attending this classy and spacious venue. Top performers don't just take the stage here, they can often be found in attendance.
If you're an art lover you have another reason to visit THE NEW ROOF. The stage is found literally on the roof while underneath original works of beautiful art by Lingual himself can be found.
Strum Diesel was in top voice tonight giving us a little growl mixed with his outstanding guitar playing and usual sense of humor that makes him a delight to listen to.
Following Strum was Amforte Clarity. If you like Alanis Morissette you'll love AMFORTE! Her witty style will have you smiling through out her entire set.
Lazarus Doghouse took the stage next with sounds that are reminscent of Jim Morrison, post- Doors.
But this article isn't about the musicians who played here as entertaining as they were :) THIS article is about Lingual Markus and THE NEW ROOF!
Lingual and I sat down after the line up and chatted a bit about the success of his popular and always packed venue... I was interested about why he moved from the NYC Sim in December.
Lingual Markus: After a month and a half as a vagabond venue that took every sim it went to down with it... I settled on a great, stable sim! I had planned to just use my friend Mikas mall and test other locations, but the sim crashed with 40 people on it, the first night we opened.
Dreams Riler: From what I know THE ROOF holds more than that on most nights.
Lingual: We used to fill the NYC sim to capacity regularly.
Dreams: Why DID you move?
Lingual: When I took vacation at the end of September - I came back to find out the NYC Sim was up for sale.
So with two weeks notice and a few goodbye gigs Ling packed up shop and sought a place that could hold numbers THE ROOF regularly brought in. Sim after Sim crashed under the crowds wanting to claim their place on the "A" list. Although the Sims were judged to be stable they were crashing with less than 60 people which didn't make sense when the NYC Sim was able to hold such numbers. What was the difference Ling asked rhetorically... beta servers. It took a Magnum or Blue Steel server to handle attendance that large.
Although Sim owners were trying to convince Ling to accept 40 as the best he could do, he refused to accept it.
Lingual: When I opened The Roof it was built for a crowd of 40. I figured if we got 50, it would be perfect; and we got 60+ regularly. I wasn't going to downgrade to a place where I could only get 40. The philosophy of the Roof is not making it exclusive, but being a tips venue, limiting the crowd wouldn't work.
Dreams: Tips and you still draw crowds like that!
Lingual: We draw very generous crowds that make it worthwhile for musicians to want to play here. It's usually pretty fun and musicians leave feeling pretty good.
Speaking of such a loyal fan base, I asked Ling if he was afraid the move might confuse folks and lose regulars. Not many venues survive a landmark change. Folks go to the old one and if it's gone, they may just remove it from their inventory and remove themselves from the group missing important updates.
Lingual: I had no choice but to move. I feared losing the crowd. But I had two weeks to hype the move, and urge people to join the groups to stay informed. Any move is confusing enough, but at one point there were 3 different places set up as ROOFs.
The "hype" not only paid off but from where I was standing THE ROOF has not only survived but is THRIVING!
THE NEW ROOF now resides on Eyefliez...
Lingual: A Sim with SO much history, the home of SO many venues in the past and I get along so well with Thea and G. Its so many more prims for the same price as I was paying before. They were extraordinarily generous with their time and venue while I was a nomad.
And all those extra prim come in handy for Ling since he has an art gallery so full of the most original and creative pieces I've ever seen. STUDIO MARKUS GALLERIES does not house your typical Second Life snapshots. Ling has a real eye for finding the unique and if he can't find it, he just creates it and then helps YOU to see it too.
I asked Ling to elaborate on the artsie side of his venue.
Lingual: NYC was more about The Music than for the Art for me. Before NYC I had Studio Markus in a skybox, SO this... is a QUANTUM LEAP from what I had before. I have a gallery that shows my SL artwork... as well as the Artwork of DavidWeiner. There's a combination of SL artwork by me and David as well as my photos of Guerilla Burlesque, on the 2nd floor by the Garden.
AS IF all of this weren't enough, Lingual also manages an impressive list of performers that include AMFORTE, Saintess, Loreen Aldrin, SweetLilly Pinelli, Stratus Mactavish and Amereth Popastar.
Dreams: What's been your most difficult struggle in maintaining such a successful venue?. What sets you apart being that most venues go under soon after opening?
Lingual: Staying as lean as possible yet not be stressed out and try to do it all myself. This is a HUGE improvement... this space.. having all these extra prims... but I still try to keep all costs as skint as possible. But everything cost more each year... good help costs more.. musicians cost more.... as we have grown we tip more when we can afford to. The SL economy is interesting. Tips are down. At the Roof... we were down about 400% from last year (going back to your earlier question of losing patrons in the move). BUT... this February is good... and people are finding us. We have two "exclusive" shows here... and are adding more as we can. Voodoo Shilton's Guitar Shop is unlike any other gig Voodoo does... and FunkyFreddy's Ambient Republic is my favorite hour each month!
Speaking of not trying to do it alone... Lingual has taken on a co-owner! I know, I know I'm shocked too *chuckles* It was bound to happen folks. The man has been running THE ROOF for 3 years this April. Now I know very few venues that ban boast 1 year much less THREE! So I let them iron out the details and then spoke with Cricket Palianta.
Dreams: Congrats on the co-ownership with Lingual Markus and THE NEW ROOF! That's quite an under-taking. Were you nervous at all about excepting his request? THE ROOF is one of the few venues with mainstay. Do you feel confident in your ability to maintain it's popularity and numbers?
Cricket: Thanks! I'm really excited about the opportunity. One of my passions in SL is the live music and co-owning THE NEW ROOF is a dream come true! I have always wanted to be a venue owner and co-owning with Ling is a good fit, we work well together, so it makes running a venue effortless (almost) and fun!
I wasn't nervous, I worked with Ling before and know what to expect, I am sure there will be some growing pains as we move from our old relationship of boss/employee to co-owners, but that is to be expected and in the end I think it's going to be a positive experience for us both.
As far as popularity and numbers... it's still THE ROOF, granted in a new location, but what makes this venue so popular, is the experience. We were successful when I was managing THE ROOF@NYC, and we plan to continue those traditions; making people feel welcome and a part of THE NEW ROOF family; having fun, and enjoying the best live music SL has to offer!
Dreams: How long have you been in SL? How did you hear about the music scene?
Cricket: According to my profile I have been in SL 1,574 days. I had a relatively long learning curve when I first joined SL and didn't discover live music for months. I was more focused on fashion and modeling at first. I just stumbled on a live show the first time; Moondoggirl Moonintoog was playing. Her music was fantastic and during her show she even did a shout out to me about my unique outfit! How often do you interact personally with musicians you go to see in RL? I thought that was pretty cool. The second musician I saw was Mankind Tracer and he blew me away... after that I was hooked. I decided I wanted to work in the SL music scene and a friend told me about THE ROOF and that Ling was looking for help. So I chatted with him and he invited me to stop by the venue one night and I did... he was looking for assistants for musicians he managed, but somehow I ended up hostessing at THE ROOF@NYC, eventually I was managing the venue and assisting him with musician management as well. I worked hard, but enjoyed every minute, especially the nights we had shows.
Dreams: Did he give you an office LOL? How can folks contact you?
Cricket: My desk is bigger than his (of course)! I can be contacted in world via IM. If I am offline it's probably best to send a notecard, even though IM's do go to my email. I can also be reached when I am offline at: email@example.com.
Dreams: Who is responsible for booking?
Cricket: That would be me primarily, but Ling will still do some bookings too.
Cricket is a charming gal who will no doubt only add to the warmth and family-like atmosphere felt at THE NEW ROOF in the past, present and we look forward to many more shows in the future!
Lingual, always a gracious and friendly host will make you feel completely welcome
and always has a spot reserved... just for you at THE NEW ROOF @ STUIDO MARKUS GALLERIES.