Facebook rolled out Live Video starting in August of 2015, and it’s been quick to grow beyond a tech gimmick into an enabler for must-see moments. NASA used it to broadcast the recent solar eclipse and repairs to the International Space Station, the Walking Dead used it to reveal their Season 8 trailer and Elizabeth Warren used it to broadcast a Coretta Scott King letter immediately after being silenced on the Senate floor.
Music artists have been flocking to the platform to interact directly with their fans on their phones, computer screens and living room TVs. The ten artists on this list have taken the trend to the next level by recording albums and songs live on Facebook, even taking live feedback from their fans about the final product.
This post is sponsored by Woodstock Sessions, a producer of unique session/performance hybrids that allow fans to experience the process of record-making in person. They’ve hosted sessions with artists like Rich Robinson (of the Black Crowes), Marco Benevento, Team Sleep, and more.
This month, they’re streaming their live experience to Facebook and Youtube, with the following sessions on the way:
October 14, 5 p.m:
Arc Iris Reimagines Joni Mitchell’s Blue
Free Stream, $45 in-person.
October 21, 6 p.m:
Jesse Malin & Velvet Elk Records with Tracy Bonham fundraiser for the Woodstock Farm Sanctuary
Donations Accepted for Stream, $125 in-person.
To stream these events:
1. BBC Earth’s Blue Planet II Soundtrack
Date: August 30, 2017
Audience: 452k views and 3.5k total engagements
For five blissful minutes, BBC Earth went live to showcase the orchestral studio recording of the Blue Planet II Soundtrack. The soundtrack to this television special was composed by world-renowned composer Hans Zimmer. Blue Planet II: The Prequel will beautifully demonstrate the history and origins of this water-dominated planet.
2. Esperanza Spalding – Exposure
Date: September 12, 2017
Audience: 160k views and 10.3k total engagements
Esperanza Spalding is a jazz artist who recently wrote and recorded an entire album via Facebook Live in 77 hours. In a press release, Spalding said, “I foresee that creating before a live audience will add excitement and extra inspiration energy.” This album, Exposure, is already completely sold out in Spalding’s online store. Her work, thus far, has won her four Grammy awards and landed her numerous performances with legends like Prince.
3. Jesse Campbell’s “Ain’t No Sunshine” cover
Date: April 27, 2017
Audience: 124k views and 1.4k total engagements
Jesse Campbell, best known for his participation in NBC’s The Voice, took Facebook Live into the studio with him during his cover of “Ain’t No Sunshine”. The song, by Bill Withers with Marc Allen Felton and Tracy Carter, was recorded to promote his fans’ excitement for new music and his GoFundMe campaign.
4. Moira Dela Torre’s “Malaya”
Date: September 19, 2017
Audience: 84k views and 3k total engagements
To promote her newest single, “Malaya”, the Filipino pop artist Moira Dela Torre brought her fans into the studio with her by showing her last day of recording via Facebook Live. “Malaya” is featured on the Camp Sawi Original Motion Picture Soundtrack.
5. Neil Finn’s album Out of Silence
Date: August 25, 2017
Audience: 79k views and 7.5k total engagements
Neil Finn is a New Zealand singer/songwriter and the frontman of rock band Crowded House. His new album, Out of Silence, was recorded throughout 4 Facebook Live sessions. “Normally in the studio, there’s a lot of time to indulge and procrastinate,” he told the BBC in an interview. “But when you’re in full view you just get down to it.”
6. The Anchor’s Born of Osiris cover
Date: November 27, 2016
Audience: 59k views and 2.6k total engagements
Melodic metalcore band, The Anchor, recorded a Facebook Live cover of a popular song by metal band Born of Osiris. Viewers could witness the levels of the recording while watching front-woman in front of the mic. Creatively, The Anchor gained lots of traction on this post by offering fans to share it and win some free goodies.
7. James Vincent McMorrow’s live recording of True Care
Date: May 25, 2017 8:30 GMT
Audience: 56k views and 1.8k total engagements
In anticipation for his newest album, True Care, James Vincent McMorrow performed and recorded the entirety of the album live on Facebook the night before its international release. Of releasing his album this way, he posted on Facebook, “Making a record and releasing it when it feels fresh and vital to me, leaving its flaws and idiosyncrasies on display, not running around town talking about it before anyone has heard it… all of those things feel right to me now.”
8. Aaron Carter’s Love recording session
Date: February 25, 2017
Audience: 18k views and 1.6k total engagements
While gaining initial fame from his childhood musical stardom, Aaron Carter continues to create music and share it live with his fans. Earlier this year, Carter recorded a 1.5 hour session via Facebook Live from his new album, Love.
9. Twiddle’s acoustic live album
Date: November 6, 2016
Audience: 8.5k views and 724 total engagements
Twiddle is an American rock jam band who recently gave a 20 minute live recording of some acoustic music. Front man, Mihali Savloudis, is seen in the video being silly and showing the reality of recording to Twiddle’s fans. The band has released a number of other live singles and albums including the popular Twiddle: Live at Nectar’s.
10. Fortunate Youth’s self-titled album
Date: October 20, 2016
Audience: 7.9k views and 1.2k total engagements
In all the excitement of their new, self-titled album, Fortunate Youth went live to show 10 sweet minutes of their relaxed recording process. The SoCal Reggae sextet released this newest album in February of this year.