Students utilize home as iconic live music venue

Students utilize home as iconic live music venue

Strings of Christmas lights, an aspect the Jagoe House is well known for, hang over the usually crowded backyard. The Jagoe House is a performance and event venue in Denton that hosts various bands and parties throughout the year. Paige Bruneman

Students utilize home as iconic live music venue
August 29
12:46 2017

On select weekends, the lights of the Jagoe House burn bright. A mass of people stand beneath the various twinkling lights, chatting with their friends and allowing themselves to listen to the music roaring from inside.

On other weekend nights, it is the place to be. Music floods the street until early morning when the crowds go home.

By day, however, the Jagoe House is just like every other house in Denton.

What’s unique about Jagoe House is that the residents have made it priority to turn their home into a well-functioning, small-scale concert venue, and a recording studio in the future.

Media arts junior Ryan Gordon is one of four people currently living in Jagoe. Gordon has lived at the Jagoe House since August 2016 and has since taken over the responsibilities that come with living in a house venue.

“I fully knew what I was getting myself into,” Gordon said.

Gordon and his roommates have done their best to make sure that the Jagoe House has a presence on every form of social media.

Jagoe can be found on Instagram under the username jagoehouse, captioned as a performance and event venue. Its feed consists of short videos and photos of performances, band promotions and announcements for upcoming events.

“We all have our hands dipped into the social media,” Gordon said. “Everyone who lives here gets a chance to run the Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram.”

There is an email linked to the account for bands to reach out to Gordon and his other housemates if they are interested in preforming at Jagoe. People can also reach out over Facebook.

The bands can perform without any fees involved, as Gordon sees this as an opportunity for them to have publicity without a cost.

“The bands are picked to play if they’re ready to put on a good show and have their songs down,” Gordon said. “They have to have fun with it.”

The housemates have received submissions ranging from local bands in Denton to bands in Nottingham, England.

Even before they move in, the Jagoe residents must know what being responsible for a concert house requires. Jagoe House residents come and go. Occasionally, a resident decides it’s time to move on and a vacancy is available for one of the four rooms.

English junior Cole Helms is the newest member of the Jagoe House. Helms moved in several weeks ago and has made it his priority to clean up the house.

“I just moved in, and it wasn’t very clean,” Helms said. “There’s a broom closet with a lot of memorabilia of past concerts and lost items, we had to clear that out.”

Helms and Gordon were fans of Jagoe years before they were residents.

“We’ve been coming here for a couple years before living here,” Helms said. “The Boombachs were one of the first bands I saw play here.”

Gordon, Helms and the other residents of Jagoe are now responsible for making sure the concert runs smoothly. Gordon said what sets them apart from other concert venues is they have a lot of man power and work as a team to make sure everything runs smoothly.

During Jagoe concerts, timing is crucial. The front door of the house is specifically used as an enter and exit for the bands and their instruments. Their goal is simple — to set up and break down the equipment in-between sets as quickly as possible and to arrange effortless transitions from band to band.

These smooth transitions would not happen without the housemates working together.

The house members of Jagoe work in teams to monitor different points of interaction during the shows. They take turns working the front desk, taking donations and monitoring all the doors.

“When you have a place like this and people you’ve never met come here sometimes in the hundreds, then you have to make sure everything is running smoothly,” Gordon said. “We do our best to make sure everyone is having a good time and is being safe. If there are problems, we will have to deal with them.”

Giving back to the bands is important. Band Together Denton was a three-day long event at Jagoe where all donations were given to the bands and the Denton community.

Meach Pango is one of the local bands performing at Jagoe House’s back to school show on Sept. 1. It is the group’s first time preforming there, and they have high hopes for the outcome of it.

Meach Pango’s lead singer Alex Mackenzie said the band sees this opportunity as a way to get a big break in the Denton community.

“It was actually the first house show I went to when I moved out here a year ago,” Mackenzie said. “When I went, that was my first real experience of a house show. I was mesmerized by how intimate it was.”

The intimate setting of Jagoe is what their band was searching for. They believed the closer proximity would allow them to reach out to potential fans and gain a larger following.

Mackenzie and the bands are appreciative of the opportunity Jagoe has presented them and hope it will help sell their upcoming album, called “Fresh Fruit,” that will be released on Sept. 8.

The Jagoe House not only utilizes its house for the bands, but it also allows local vendors of Denton to gain business during their shows.

Vendors often reach out to Gordon and the other members of Jagoe House and simply ask permission to set up their booths during concerts. Vendors look to sell their jewelry, music, clothing and art.

“I like when the local vendors come because it really gives a sense of community,” Gordon said.

While working with the community is important to the house, music has always been the priority. Helms and Gordon are looking to possibly turn the Jagoe House into a recording studio.

Gordon said they are currently “trying to get some studio concepts going on.”

“Bands can practice and record, we would love to contact a sound engineer who has all the mixing craft to supply a live show or a live concert,” Gordon said.

While these concepts are still in the distant future, Gordon and his housemates are looking to have them become a reality. In addition to Meach Pango, the Jagoe House’s back to school show will include local bands Sad Cops, OG Garden and Body English.

Featured Image: Strings of holiday lights, an aspect the Jagoe House is well known for, hang over the usually crowded backyard. The Jagoe House is a performance and event venue in Denton that hosts various bands and parties throughout the year. Paige Bruneman

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Anna Orr

Anna Orr

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