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When you get the creative flow going you want to keep it going. I find a new project focuses attention and keeps me involved. So sometimes you have to look to the future to try to envision new possibilities.

And that's where I'm at with livesteaming buskers off the grid. I've done a couple of failed experiments with my phone but I don't have good reception on the twitch porch so that probably doesn't mean much. I'm a lot further along with the busking equipment than I am with the livestream stuff.

There are many battery powered amps available. I chose the JBL Eon One Pro for about $500. I am very happy with the sound and the battery life. It also has Bluetooth which I use for playing my iReal Pro backing tracks from my tablet. I have a Samsung Galaxy Tab A and it has good battery life.

I have a Roland Go Piano that runs off batteries and it has nice keyboard action and good piano sound. But since I've been livestreaming I notice the difference between it and my Roland FP-4. Both in playability and in sound. I could use the midi out on the Go Piano and play from a midi library on the laptop. This might not take up too much cpu.

I would rather busk with a good hammer action keyboard. There are some good keyboards that use batteries. Just not the ones I'm looking at. So I'm looking into a couple of Deep Cycle 12V batteries and an inverter. This rig would also run my pellet stove in the winter if we lose power so I am justifying the expense that way. Otherwise this probably wouldn't be an affordable solution for me. There are smaller batteries that might run just a piano and one battery and an inverter would be a little over $100.

There are also consumer battery charger/jump starters with 110 outlets. Again the multifunctionality may justify the expense.

I bought an Acer Aspire E5-576 laptop that has enough cpu and ram to livestream video. I have used it for livestreaming 720p from the twitch porch. This laptop has an exceptionally long battery life, 9 hours or more of regular computing. Unfortunately livestreaming is not regular computing and the fully charged batteries only last a little under 2 hours. Which is actually pretty good for livestreaming buskers. An inverter might extend that life to do a three hour show with breaks but I would have to see how much battery it would take to power the piano for three hours. It could be that two hour shows are more realistic.

They are certainly more realistic for my endurance. I do a two hour stream from the HairyLarryLand Twitch Studio every Sunday and I don't really want it to be any longer.

I also have a USB foot switch that I cover in the DIY chapter so I can even have two webcams and switch between them when I'm busking.

So if I happen to find a busking spot with good wifi I'm home free.

And if not? My phone has a hotspot that will hook to my computer with a USB cable. It's a 4G phone so if I had good reception it might work. More modern phones would probably work better. There are many livestreamers that stream direct from their iPhones.

There are also dedicated hotspot devices with monthly fees for bandwidth. It's kind of hard to justify this expense based on a busking income but that actually depends on what you are doing and what kind of budget you have. You may also have other uses for a high end hotspot. If you're travelling while busking and stopping where you wish a hot spot like this might be just the ticket.

And then there's always plan B. If you don't have wifi and you don't have good reception for your hotspot you can turn on record and post the video later.

Right now I have three dreams for the future of my livestream. We've streamed from the twitch porch a couple of times and I feel like that's all set up and ready to go. You can read about that in another chapter. I am looking forward to more livestreams with Bebop Beatniks from the twitch porch.

My current dream is finding soloists to collaborate with me and turn my jazz trio livestreams into a quartet. Whether they do that on their livestream or in their video or audio studios it's all good with me. My songs are licensed Creative Commons Attribution so there are no copyright issues stopping anyone from collaborating with me.

Livestreaming buskers off the grid is my future dream. So this chapter is out there. In the future. Eventually. Maybe I'll be able to do this and maybe not.

"A man’s reach should exceed his grasp, or what’s heaven for?"

 - Robert Browning

The problem with promoting your art on the web is that the internet is a bottomless bucket that will swallow whatever amount of promotion you can throw at it in an attempt to make you spend all your time on web promotion and no time making art.

But I can't do that! I have a performance schedule and I have a production schedule and they take time.

What works for me is flowing out of performance into production and then into promotion as an integrated workflow. My performance takes production realities into account. The production work keeps the promotion in mind. And the promotion is designed to be easy to do. Because, believe me, you can spend endless hours typing descriptions into text boxes and it will keep you up all night if you let it.

So, health first.

And to explain further, when I wrote "My performance takes production realities into account." I meant, I really don't want to start the song with poorly played music so if I muffed it the first time around maybe I ought to play it again. And I mean that I work to keep my intros and outtros clean and editable so they don't give me a problem when I'm trimming that clip.

And for you it means something different, depending on your project. But whatever your project there will always be preparation, performance, and production cycles and thinking of prep and performance in terms of production helps you streamline your production workflow.

And tailoring your production to your promotion will also make your posting easier and better. Write your text so that it can be pasted into the description field of any social network and make sense. It should include all the links to your homepages where you initially upload and where information about you and your projects can be found. It should include license info so everyone knows when it's ok to share and what is not ok.

Video is great because it comes with it's own still, the paused video, but not all projects are video and not all websites handle video well so it's a good idea to prepare screen captures or other still photos as assets to help you with your promotion. I do one screen capture for each performance date and then I scale that same image down to web friendly sizes, in the hundreds of pixels high and wide instead of in the thousands.

I think of my servers as the trunk of the tree and posts to Youtube and other social networks as leaves that reveal a little bit about the tree and provide links to the trunk where everything is happening.

So the trunk of my tree is on two different servers, one of them sitting here to my right, as I type, running Yunohost web server software and peertube video sharing software. The other is the Live Music Archive at, the Internet Library. So two servers, one directly under my control and the other a library web service dedicated to preserving live music performances. That works for me.

The trunk of your tree may be and Youtube. It doesn't have to be your own server. It could be a free blog at and an account at Etsy. It depends on you and your project and your desires and requirements.

When the work is finished and ready to distribute post it to your trunk or your servers first. This should be part of your production workflow making the content available while you prepare your promotional text and other assets that go with each production.

So I post to the Live Music Archive first, audio and then video. By the time the video is uploaded, which can take a long time, the audio item is ready for some metadata tweaks so the mp3 versions of the songs carry the correct info right in the file.

Then I upload to peertube. My goal here is a playlist so part of my production workflow includes numbering the sets in order. I upload to peertube in performance order and create the playlist at the same time so it will also be in performance order. I add the link to the playlist into the text description. I also add the link to this peertube video to the text because this is the same text I will use everywhere and I want it to link back to me. That is to

Uploading to peertube goes really fast because I'm uploading to my own server right in my house. So the bits really fly across the LAN going possibly as far as my ISP and back but no farther.

I also have a nextcloud file backup and sharing service installed on my other server at the domain. I upload all of my assets, audio, video, screenshots, and text to a dated folder there. But it's not really part of the trunk because I don't build my promotion from there. It's more like a backup server than a promotional website.

Backing up all my files to the nextcloud server is also part of my production and promotion workflow. If you do your backups as a separate job sometimes they won't get done. Integrate your backups into your workflow where they are another important part of the whole process. Don't think of them as a separate chore.

I use a star system. 1 star means good enough for video production. 3 stars marks a song for extra promotion. So, if I have a three star song in the performance I upload it to Youtube. Otherwise I usually upload the first song in the playlist.

And when I get to the description field I copy and paste the text I already have on peertube. This includes a link to the playlist and to the video on my peertube. It also includes a link to the nextcloud files so potential collaborators can download best quality video files without having to deal with the Youtube or peertube processing.

You see, I haven't done any web collaboration with other musicians playing over my piano trio tracks yet but it is already built into the production workflow and the promotion because it's something I would like to do in the future.

And then I post the Youtube page everywhere because everyone is familiar with Youtube and all the websites work with Youtube videos.

Facebook sucks. I don't use it. You really shouldn't use it. That's a rant for another article. There are a large number of your fans that only use facebook and they never go anywhere else. There are a large number of your fans, like me, who never use facebook because facebook sucks.

So I post to facebook. From an earlier era I have a Hairy Larry facebook and I have a Delta Boogie facebook. When I'm done posting to Youtube they have a nice share screen which allows me to share my videos on facebook without actually going on facebook. So I post to Hairy Larry and then I post to a friends timeline to get Delta Boogie and I try to get out of there without any of the facebook stuff rubbing off on me.

I also use the Youtube share screen to post to the @hairylarryland twitter.

I also have a Friendica instance that puts me in the Mastodon Fediverse and I post the Youtube there because I have trouble embedding the peertube on Friendica. This shouldn't be the way it is because both peertube and Friendica reside in the same share space and can actually share messages with each other. So, when doing your promotion let pragmatism rule and do what works so you can get it done because you can also spend all night dealing with the intricacies of peer to peer social networks. Which you should do, if that's your thing. But I'm warning you, it's hard. Like Calculus. You have to learn how to think in a different way.

You also want to hope that you get all this done before your next scheduled performance. Because after you go through another production cycle and you have new work to promote you should spend your time promoting that.



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