Setlist.fm, which first launched in September 2008, is a self-described “wiki-like” website that allows users to post actual set lists played by various music artists at their concerts. Once the list is posted, the site then links the set list to any available video or audio of the song on the web. The site is also able to generate statistics regarding concert set lists for artists, letting users know what songs are most likely to be performed by various artists in their concerts.
Users are able to join the site and post set lists for free, and the site’s accuracy is kept in check by various users — much in the same way Wikipedia monitors its vast content. The central goal of the site is to track actual set lists performed by artists- not simply the set list that is created prior to the concert by the artist, which depending on the artist can vary greatly.
For example, a search for “Bruce Springsteen” yields results for his last concert on March 15, 2012 at SXSW and goes all the way back to January 9, 1973. A search for “Madonna” yields results from May 3, 1985 to her February 5, 2012 Super Bowl appearance at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. Searching for “Elton John” produces results from his last concert on March 15, 2012 in Roanoke, VA and go all the way back to his May 22, 1970 concert in London.
Currently, Setlist.fm has a database consisting of over 400,000 set lists from over 25,000 artists from appearances in 70,000 venues around the world. The site has an estimated 1.5 million users per month. In its press release announcing the purchase of Setlist.fm, Live Nation indicated that the change in the site’s ownership will not bring about widespread changes to its current state. Rather, “Setlist.fm will create a richer, more interactive fan experience within the Live Nation community.”
According to Live Nation’s CEO Michael Rapino, Live Nation intends to expand Setlist.fm’s reach outside of the internet and into the realm of mobile devices and applications. “Setlist.fm built a great product for concert fans and we will further elevate this by incorporating it into Live Nation’s global portfolio across mobile, apps and online,” said Rapino in Live Nation’s press release. “Setlist.fm fits perfectly with our goal of providing fans an engaging experience that extends the fun and excitement of the live concert before, during, and after the show.”
Becoming a part of Live Nation should, at least on paper, only improve Setlist.fm and its access to artists and concerts.
Live Nation Entertainment Inc. is made up of four distinct elements: Ticketmaster.com, Live Nation Concerts, Front Line Management Group, and Live Nation Network. Live Nation Concerts is responsible for producing 22,000 concerts every year for more than 2,300 different artists. Access to that arm of Live Nation alone should help bolster Setlist.fm.
Alexa Wildhaber, CEO of Setlist.fm, spoke positively about the purchase in Live Nation’s press release. “Live Nation has demonstrated great appreciation for Setlist.fm and our passionate community,” said Wildhaber. “We are thrilled that Setlist.fm will become a part of the world’s largest live entertainment company.”