And if you follow my writing, this isn't the first time you've heard me mention Grove. Grove got off the ground two years ago, but had its grand opening last Summer. Founded by musicians and partnering with community members and local businesses, the Grove team aims, above all, to create a space for collaboration and opportunity... And what they're featuring now, just seven months after their grand opening, is access to the digital recording platform OpenLive for the clients that use their Grove Room.
OpenLIVE is a hardware and software solution that adds to Grove's internet of things solutions to great rehearsal spaces for musicians of all stripes. OpenLIVE allows artists to quickly create an account in 60 seconds, book their session on Grove's website and then book their recording time. Then, all they have to do is show up, perform and rehearse. Minutes later, you get a recording. The artist could either release it right there and then, on their bandcamp page, or just keep it as a demo.
OpenLIVE comes from an Australian company, and this Ypsi location is one of only three venues in the United States offering it to clientele/artists. You'll get free access to OpenLIVE if you book Grove's "deluxe room." (They also have a "classic room," with just the basics, PA, guitar, bass amps, drum kit). If you want to utilize Grove, it's not like you have to pay monthly dues or rent out a space... There are peak, and off-peak times, with rates ranging from $15-$25 per hour. You can book time online, and there's 24/7 access, available, if you'd like to be a Resident, rather than an hourly renter. You can see some promotional offers currently running on their Facebook page.
So you can essentially think of this dynamic web app as having Hal 9000 recording you as you work, and then wrapping it all up for you once you're done. "We want artists to control their own content," said co-founder Rick Coughlin. "We just want to support making the means of accessing great content for them easy and affordable.
That said, Grove isn't intending to become a Recording Studio. That might be the plan down the line, in the future, when they set up industrial-size shipping containers to offer artists who want flawless sound isolation properties for their recordings. Coughlin knows there are plenty of exceptional studios nearby, including TapWater in Detroit, Willis Sound and Big Sky in the Ypsi/Arbor area. "At $25 per hour (Grove) is between what a bonafide studio offers, and what you can pull off on a cell phone, or using Garage Band," said Coughlin. But with Grove, it's "...totally automated, so musicians can focus on what they are best at, and know that their content for audio is going to be on point." The next step, if you stay tuned, is Live Streaming.