Since 2009, booking agent Eric Dimenstein of Ground Control Touring has been helping Kurt Vile and his band the Violators spread their folklore to lo-fi and hi-fi audiences alike, this year promoting Vile’s critical darling of an LP, “Walkin’ on a Pretty Daze.” “When I first started working for him he was coming out of a lo-fi scene,” Dimenstein says of the Philadelphia native. “The first time I saw him was some warehouse in Brooklyn.”
AUDIENCE: For Dimenstein, the journey has been a gradual build since 2010’s “Smoke Ring for My Halo.” “The last album was the breakout album and “Walking on a Pretty Daze” is breaking it out even further in terms of draw, sales, attendance. Tickets are selling faster out the gate.” On his last tour, Vile played 1,000-capacity venues toward the end of the album cycle. Now, he’s booking 1,400-capacity buildings. Looking to gigs at the Metro in Chicago (July 11) and the 9:30 Club in Washington, D.C. (July 20), Dimenstein expects sellouts.
ROUTING: The just-announced summer dates will bring Vile to parts of the United States he’s missed in recent years, with stops at the Urban Lounge in Salt Lake City (Aug. 13), the Bluebird Cafe in Denver (Aug. 15) and Firebird in St. Louis (Aug. 17). “There’s probably a couple of these markets he’s never been to, period. I’ve never booked him in Albuquerque [N.M.], but he’s going there.” Additional dates were organized around festival appearances at FYF, Pickathon and Outside Lands.
PROMOTION: For Dimenstein, artist-to-fan promotion on social media is still the best way to boost ticket sales. He also tries to organize unique events to increase Vile’s profile, most recently coordinating an upcoming gig in the courtyard of ÂPhiladelphia’s City Hall on Aug. 28–the mayor will declare the date “Kurt Vile Day” and present him a Liberty Bell, the highest honor one can receive from the city. “It was an acknowledgement to Kurt for spreading the culture of Philly to the rest of the world.”
Booking Agent: Eric Dimenstein, Ground Control Touring
Tour Dates: June 29-Sept. 7