My nerdy husband often says, “With a great house, comes great responsibility.”
Spiderman reference notwithstanding, it’s a statement that rings true with our Macon home. We were lucky enough to find a beautiful historic home, sitting on top of Coleman Hill, right on the edge of the park.
When we first wandered through the huge rooms, marveling at the high ceilings and carved wood details, it was declared to be “the ultimate party house.” The back of the house boasts an addition of a long room that runs the width of the house, with wall-to-wall windows overlooking the park and the city. The room was quickly dubbed “The Party Room,” and it has lived up to its name in the four years we have lived here.
Our Party Room has played host to quite a few of our favorite musical acts, whom we have known from our days as editors at various music magazines. The first to play a house show was Atlanta progressive folk rockers Little Tybee. Then jazz-soul singer Sophia Bastian played, as we became the first home to host a Macon Music Ambassadors show, a grant-funded program that brings musicians to Macon for a tour of the city and a concert in a historic home.
We’ve also had the talents of Durham-based power-pop artist Brett Harris, New York singer-songwriter Ben Arthur, Macon’s own Dalmatian, students from the McDuffie Center for Strings, and most recently, this past weekend, the charming sounds of folk pop trio Bombadil, all grace the Party Room of our home.
Each show has felt as much a communal gathering of the neighborhood as it has an avenue for entertainment. The wide, easily accessible Party Room can be quickly configured to set up a band at one end, and the tall ceilings make for some excellent acoustics.
With such a fine setting, how could we, such intense lovers of music, not use the space to our advantage? When we have artists that we adore, and want to shout their praises from the rooftops, we can pretty much do that in our own home by hosting them and bringing in as many folks as we can squeeze in.
Getting friends to come over to share a growler of local beer and sit on our couch for a gig that will be over by 11 p.m. is a relatively easy feat. And if you’re lucky enough to be the owner of one of Macon’s many beautiful historic homes, and have an appreciation of acts that might have a tough time getting a gig here in the right setting, then I encourage you to host a house show, too.
Leila Regan-Porter is the administrative assistant at the Otis Redding Foundation, the marketing co-chair for Bragg Jam and president of the Main Street Macon board. Follow her on Twitter @theleila.com or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.