Veteran Music Fans ‘Live Life to 11’ – Online and in the ‘Real World’ – Thanks to the Web’s Newest Social Network

A 50 year old lawyer who wears his Clash t-shirt under an Armani suit…a 40 year old artist who does her best work late at night, with Journey blasting from the speakers…a thirtysomething couple, just relocated and desperately looking to find friends who want to do more than share potty training stories.

These are the “veteran rockers” – people who know that a gray hair or two is no reason to turn down the volume on your life. They’re everywhere, and yet there was no way to find one another. Until now., The Community for Kick-Ass Grownups, launched in July, features free memberships and a full social network experience. Online, members can create special interest groups, post blogs, embed video and audio and make friends with like-minded people across the globe. Offline, local Tribe chapters gather for record store expeditions, pre-concert tailgating and parties that are anything but dull.

Cheap Beer + Thin Lizzy = A Big Idea

The site is the brainchild of two 48 year old Colorado music geeks, Jon Bard and Bruce Brodeen. “We were sitting in our favorite dive bar on a Friday night, pumping money into the jukebox and drinking cheap beer,” Bard says. “And it occurred to us ‘where is everybody?’ Why aren’t there scores of other people our age in here listening to Thin Lizzy and having a blast?”

“We knew that these folks were out there,” continues Brodeen. “We see them at shows, we see them at record stores. But how do we connect them with each other?”

A few scrawls on the back of a beer coaster ultimately led to a worldwide social network for veteran rockers – The Rock and Roll Tribe.

What Makes The Tribe Different

According to Bard and Brodeen, The Rock and Roll Tribe’s true purpose is to connect people in “real life”, to spark and nurture friendships at a time in life when new friends can be hard to come by.

“Talk to anyone over 30 and they’ll tell you the same thing – it just gets harder to meet people who share your interests, your values, your sense of humor, your taste in music. We all yearn to be surrounded by people to ‘get us’, but we rarely are. For people who want to maintain their rebellious spirit and not get sucked into the whole ‘grownup thing’, it’s even harder and more frustrating.”

One of The Tribe’s first orders of business was to set up the “Local Chapter Incubator”, where members find others in their area to arrange meet ups, attend shows together, plan record store expeditions and expand their social circles. Already, chapters in major American and international cities are forming.

Can Kickass Grownups Save The Music Industry?

Brodeen, who founded and ran the record label Not Lame Recordings for close to two decades, says The Tribe is about much more than schmoozing. “Our generation buys music. We don’t steal it. And it’s an ingrained behavior for us to constantly seek out new music to buy. So why in the world have we been ignored by the music industry? It’s crazy, but it’s been happening for years. We’re here to change that dynamic.”

The Rock and Roll Tribe includes a number of powerful ways for musicians to find new fans – and buyers – for their music. Bands can create fan pages and user groups, post music and video, link to online stores and participate in “Best of The Tribe” samplers in which the music Tribe member bands are shared with the entire Tribe. Genres range from classic rock, punk and heavy metal to Americana, jambands, reggae, blues and more. Again, it’s all free for both artists and fans.

“A demographic hungry for new music. Artists desperately seeking ways to find listeners. Putting them together is a true no-brainer,” Brodeen says.

Living the “Kickass Grownup” Lifestyle

Although music is the glue of The Tribe, the scope will range far beyond chords and notes. Tools, info and resources for living a “life turned up to 11” will be a major part of the site. Travel, books and movies, cooking, health, money, parenting and a range of other interests will be explored, all in keeping with the philosophy “Don’t Get Old, Get Rock!”

“It’s not about denying getting older, it’s about denying the expectations of getting older,” Bard says. “We’re here to live life on an upward trajectory, and to make damn certain that our good times aren’t to be looked back on – but looked forward to.”

Originally posted 2010-09-14 13:56:09.