July 9, 2015 Last Updated 10:10 am

Top public radio stations partner on new streaming app VuHaus

New iOS and Android app features filmed live and in-studio performances shot at member stations such as KCRW in Santa Monica and WFUV in New York

The music streaming industry is booming, if you haven’t noticed (yes, I know you have). One new service you may have missed is the group effort of some of the country’s top public radio stations. Launched under the developer account of Public Media Company, the new streaming app is called VuHaus (iOS and Android).

The app has a nice point of differentiation: it features rare performances filmed live and in-studio at stations such as KCRW (Los Angeles), WFUV (NYC) and KEXP (Seattle).

vuhaus-iPad“VuHaus is focused on how to help emerging artists break through to larger national audiences,” VuHaus president Erik Langner told TNM. “Commercial media has largely gotten out of the business of local music discovery; for VuHaus and its member stations, it’s all we care about.”

“For decades, VuHaus’ member stations have earned audiences’ trust as tastemakers, steering them in the direction of the best new music and artists,” program director, Mark Abuzzahab, said. “As the coalition of so many talented music show hosts and program directors, VuHaus curates the most rare and unique in-studio performances from both emerging and established artists – with the goal of making it easier for fans to discover new music they are sure to love.”

The app is simply designed, with a carousel at the top with featured performances, followed by rows of two boxes with other artist performances. The fonts are a tad small for the iPad mini, but fine on the iPhone and larger tablets.

The business model here is likely advertising at some point as the apps and access to the content are free. (Testing the app I noticed there are occasionally short VuHaus snippets that run before the music video appears, this is where future paid advertising might appear.)

The original apps were launched into the Apple App Store and Google Play in May and so far have received few user reviews – which is a shame because not only is the app free, but it offers a great way to repurpose this filmed music performances. As a former newspaper executive at the now shuttered Santa Monica Outlook it is especially great to see the videos from KCRW.

Here is the teaser video from VuHaus, and below the video you will find the announcement for the app launch:

Boulder, CO – In public radio stations across the country every day, musicians like Chet Faker, Sylvan Esso, Aloe Blacc, Jenny Lewis, and Alt-J are delivering intimate, jaw-dropping, spine-tingling performances.

Now, the best of these in-studio video gems, as well as no-holds-barred artist interviews and must-see live streamed concerts curated from the nation’s most influential public radio stations, can be found under one roof at VuHaus, a new video platform and mobile app for music fans seeking to experience and discover the best new artists and songs.

VuHaus launched in May 2015 with a coalition of public radio member stations that have become the nation’s musical tastemakers and a must-stop for artists on concert or album release tours including KCRW (Los Angeles), KEXP (Seattle), WFUV (New York), WXPN (Philadelphia), KUTX (Austin), and KTBG The Bridge (Kansas City). New VuHaus station partners will be announced in the coming months.

VuHaus showcases gorgeously shot, in-studio live sessions best experienced in wide screen with the volume on high. Fans will enjoy video treasures like Courtney Barnett and her band performing Avant Gardener in Halloween costumes, Beck delivering a show-stopping performance of Blue Moon from his Grammy Award-winning album Morning Phase (KCRW), and Ingrid Michaelson adding moving new dimensions to her indie hit Girls Chase Boys (WFUV).


Fans can also discover unsigned and small label artists championed by their local radio stations, like Kansas City’s The Wind and The Wave and Philadelphia’s Strand of Oaks. Local stations curate pages for cities including New York City, Los Angeles, and Kansas City that feature spotlights on local artists, video playlists, and the latest live performances and music videos.

According to VuHaus Program Director Mark Abuzzahab, who was formerly program director of KKXT-FM (Dallas-Fort Worth), non-commercial radio station’s like VuHaus’ partners have become the country’s leading engines for music discovery, handpicking local, emerging and established artists to play live music in their studios and on location.

“VuHaus’ member radio stations have established a stunning track record for being crossover-hit makers and a launching pad for new artists,” said Abuzzahab. “Artists have made their studios the first stop when they are on tour or want to debut new music, and the result is the type of mesmerizing performances you’d never experience at a concert hall, music festival or on TV.”

Other feature highlights of VuHaus include

  • Artist of the Week – An artist currently blowing up at one of its member stations, or celebrating a new album release, tour or breakout appearance, VuHaus will feature a playlist of one artist’s most enthralling performances. The Artist of the Week will also program their own playlist from VuHaus’ video archives. VuHaus’ inaugural Artist of the Week is Melbourne-based singer/songwriter Courtney Barnett.
  • The Local Spotlight – Spotlights a band or artist based in a VuHaus member station’s market. The feature includes an interview with the artist/band, an article about them by the local station, and a video playlist of their hottest gigs. VuHaus’ inaugural Local Spotlight artist is Danielle Nicole from KTBG The Bridge in Kansas City.
  • Playlists – Curated playlists by VuHaus, artists and member stations – like Triple Crown, featuring the best three live performance videos selected by each member station, and Non-Comm, featuring artists performing at the nation’s largest adult alternative music festival, including Best Coast, Brandi Carlisle, and James McMurtry.

“Non-commercial radio stations like KCRW have been uncovering the best new artists and music for decades,” said Jennifer Ferro, President of KCRW. “We’re thrilled to join with VuHaus and like-minded stations across the country to bring our musical treasures to a wider national audience.”

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