From left: Airshow’s David Glasser, Ann Blonston and James Tuttle.
Ever since opening Airshow’s facility in Boulder, Colo., in 1997, company co-founder and chief mastering engineer David Glasser has mastered live releases for top local acts. “In the case of String Cheese Incident, we must have mastered about 150 of their shows,” Glasser says. “They were one of the first bands to do a quick-turnaround CD issue for their concerts. They went to a more economical model when [Internet] downloads became the way to go.”
In 2006, Airshow’s partners created a sister company, FestivaLink.net, “to [provide] the marketing and business overview” for distributing live releases online, explains Ann Blonston, who is general manager of both companies. FestivaLink.net offers Airshow’s audio services to artists; works with online distribution platforms LiveDownloads.com, Amazon MP3, iTunes and HDtracks; and partners with festival organizers to record shows—often with the help of front-of-house engineers or P.A. companies—as well as market tracks and collections to the concertgoers. Its stated mission is “to capture ‘festival moments’ and…help keep memorable music alive by releasing recordings from the archives of festivals, clubs and radio shows.” Recordings are packaged as MP3s, FLAC downloads and on CDs.
“We took what jam bands were doing in a very ad-hoc fashion and created a digital record label model,” Blonston says. “We do timely post-production [that] is fully approved by the artist before it is released, and full mechanical licensing. [Festivals] are a revenue partner; everybody gets paid.”
Blonston heads up FestivaLink’s management team while Glasser oversees its audio team, which comprises Airshow engineers James Tuttle, Charlie Pilzer, Jason McDaniel and Anna Frick. John Koehler of Klondike Sound is also a FestivaLink owner.
FestivaLink recently released tracks from the Fourmile Canyon Revival concert held in Boulder on October 9, 2010. Proceeds from the concert and sales of recorded tracks benefit the Boulder Mountain Fire Relief Fund following September’s devastating Fourmile fire in the Boulder foothills, which destroyed 169 homes and more than 6,000 acres.