Long-time media executive Marc DiLorenzo has launched a new interactive video streaming platform created specifically for guitar-based music.
After a beta period, streaming platform 2GTHR.co opened to the public Monday (May 10). For subscription ranging from $9.99 to $11.99, fans get access to live and archived performances with high-def video and audio by guitarists like Blackberry Smoke‘s Charlie Starr and Jeff Healy protégé Philip Sayce. 2GTHR.co also allows fans to have one-on-one relationships with artists and the ability to join performers “onstage” as they livestream from their homes, studios or elsewhere for face-to- face live Q&As and chats.
“We’re a VIP meet-and-greet platform, paired with a social network and a live stream concert,” explains DiLorenzo, a former executive with Fox Television, 20th Century Fox and Disney, who has helped bring legacy company’s video businesses into the streaming age.
DiLorenzo is lifelong fan of music, who took a three-year sabbatical in the 2000s to work full-time as a music composer for film and television. He’s also a guitar enthusiast and performer who noticed an uptick in guitar interest during the pandemic at all levels as well as a huge rise in popularity of guitar-based music, instruction and retail.
“I’ve always wanted to get closer to the artist — to know something about them, ” DiLorenzo says his motivation for founding 2GTHR. “The traditional paid meet-and-great gets you proximity, but they don’t really get you close. My thesis was that can we use the technology to actually do something.”
DiLorenzo decided to focus on engineering a platform where fans could have on-screen conversations with artists and virtually join them onstage. The technology, he says, makes livestreams feel more like live events with the interactivity between fans and the artist giving a new dimension.
“Most technology platforms that exist today, they’re either built for one way webcasts like webinars or streamed concerts, or they’re built like zoom for a video conference, which is terrible for music. So we set out to build something optimized for high-quality streams uploaded from the artists so that the music and video and audio are high depth and high quality,” he says. “We also took advantage of the thing that is sort of uniquely valuable that you can do with the technology, like having someone raise their hand and come on screen and meet their heroes face to face.”
The ability to ask questions and participate is included with subscription pricing. Artists are paid a performance fee for performing on 2GTHR, which takes care of promoting and marketing the show, and the streaming technology is simple to set up and requires very little engineering, DiLorenzo says.
Participating artists include Josh Smith, named 16th best living blues guitar player in the world by Guitar World magazine; American electric blues guitarist, singer and songwriter Kirk Fletcher; British blues guitarists Matt Schofield; Jimmy Page collaborator Audley Freed and performer and chair of the Guitar department at Los Angeles College of Music Molly Miller.