26
Nov

How TourKidd Was Born
{…the coffee was black}

“There was nowhere to go but everywhere, so just keep on rolling under the stars.”

― J. Kerouac

This is not the story of some Standford business grad with an idea and a pile of investor capital sitting in the bank. TourKidd’s story doesn’t being in a think tank, or a focus group, or as some computer science major’s honor’s thesis.

The story of  TourKidd begins within the thin walls of Tempe’s rental houses that become DIY music venues every weekend.

It begins with a crazy vision for a hopeful future for independent music.

I started booking shows in Tempe, Arizona around 2010 with a team of young, creative, gutsy college students in an organization called The Underground Foundation.

We were a bunch of punk kids that got it in their heads that booking a bunch of house shows could help revive a town’s arts and music community.

We seriously thought people would get behind us. We thought that–with enough passion and DIY ethic–we could make something beautiful happen.

We thought we could change our world.

We were right.

After booking a few shows (the first couple were completely terrible), and building a booking team of smart, passionate, people, our booking operation started finding its rhythm.

We booked about 3o shows over the course of a year while developing a solid network of members and partnering musicians, all of whom were dedicated to making the whole thing work.

One sunny day in the middle of March–I remember it clearly-ish–someone referred to me as a local “promoter.”

I panicked and, with a wave of a sweaty palm, dismissed the accusation.

The next day, I received an email from a touring band. I almost passed out…

Fast-forward two years, and that little booking organization is a staple of the Tempe music community, and I had years of booking experience under my belt.

1. Why do these touring bands we book often look so…beat, tired, hungry, jaded?

2. What makes a good promoter a good promoter?

3. How exactly does this whole DIY tour thing really work?

4. How can we do it better?

I came to the conclusion every one seems to come to these days:

Identify Problem ==> Make an app to solve Problem.

The app was to be called, “TourCat”.

But, that was taken, so I went with “TourKidd.”

That’s when I reached out to one of my oldest friends, tech wiz, and my earliest mentor in the Arizona hardcore punk scene, Seve Zavala.

I told him the big idea. His eyes lit up as he wagged his finger in my direction. “That’s a good idea,” he said, “that could help help a lot of people. I’m down.”

So we brainstormed together and came up with an general idea for an app that helps bands, fans, and promoters connect to make tours and show rad, basically.

Seve reached out to the best designer he knew. His name was Nicholas Aufiero. He loved the idea and resolved to dedicate his time and talent to bring the concept to life before the eyes of the world.

We all met over coffee at Cartel and agreed to get to work on this big idea called “TourKidd.”

“Will they get the name?”
“I think so.”
“And it’ll change everything, you think?”
“Yes. Definitely.”
“When should we start?”
“Last month.”

And, with that, started along the path toward a better world for musicians, promoters, venue owners, and fans of independent music. It is that very path you are bearing witness to today. Our journey is directed by one clear mission.

Our mission is to make a world in which creative communities can enjoy the benefits of transparency and accountability.

Stay tuned for more updates as we log our journey toward improving creative communities across the country and, eventually, the world.

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