We recently sat down with Imagine Dragons, the Grammy award winning American rock band. In this Q&A interview, Imagine Dragons discusses why they ventured into VR to connect and engage with their fans, and shares their experience shooting a concert in 360 video at Red Rocks Amphitheater in Denver, CO.
MelodyVR works with artists to capture their shows across the music spectrum - from festival stages, to packed out arenas, to underground clubs - and enables artists to connect and engage with fans in VR.
Q: Why did you venture into VR?
We are always looking for new ways to bring our fans into the live experience. There are only so many days in the year and a lot of places to tour - VR allows a more immersive experience for someone who may not otherwise get to be there in person. And Red Rocks was the perfect venue for this as it's such an iconic, incredible place. You are surrounded by rock formations and starlight.
Q: How does VR help you connect and engage with your fans in new ways?
You can give people a vantage point they would otherwise never have at a show. They can bounce around to different places on and off the stage during the show in real time through the MelodyVR platform. You can be in the pit, next to the guitarist, etc. It's a different way to experience the show and a perspective not many people can get at a concert.
Q: For your fans, what's unique about experiencing your show in VR as opposed to other mediums (2D music videos, in person concerts)?
VR allows you more freedom than a 2D experience as you control the viewfinder. It makes for a more emotional and "real" experience. And unlike an in person concert, security isn't going to stop you from getting on stage.
Q: Tell us about your experience producing the 360 video content with MelodyVR. What surprised you? What types of challenges did you encounter?
In a way it’s much easier than producing regular video - the VR cameras are unmanned, and they’re pretty small, so you can get them into positions a cameraman would never go while the show is going on. And because it's easier to forget about the camera, the result is a little more natural and authentic.
Q: How do you foresee VR shaping the music industry going forward?
It's still an emerging market, which brings a lot of opportunity for those willing to innovate and think outside the box. Where that takes us is anyone's game at this point.
Q: What piece of feedback or insight would you share with other artists interested in VR?
It's important to get informed. VR and AR will only get more realistic and more prevalent, and if you haven't experienced it yet, it's worth trying at least once.