Unlocked Showcases

An essential part of every FAI conference is the after-hours Private Showcase scene, a festive, community-built offering of hundreds of mini-concerts presented simultaneously.


We are delighted to announce that this year, FAI will recreate (albeit virtually) this inspiring model, providing a meeting place to reconnect, discover new music, and build community among folk musicians, industry, and fans alike through the magic of Unlocked Showcases.


This year the showcases are not only available to the virtual conference attendees, but they’re also unlocked for public ticket access!

Who can perform?

Any registered delegate of Folk Unlocked can perform in the Unlocked Showcases.

When do they happen?

Unlocked Showcases can be scheduled anytime between 6:30 pm and 10 am CT during conference week (February 22-25, 2021), to give international attendees an equal opportunity to participate. They can be booked anytime before February 1, 2021.

How do you watch Unlocked Showcases?

All registered Folk Unlocked virtual conference attendees have access to watch the Unlocked Showcases at no additional cost. All artists performing must be registered for the Folk Unlocked virtual conference. Public tickets are available for fans who are only interested in watching the showcase performances.

Where do they stream from?

Participants will stream from the streaming platform of their choice, with shows listed and searchable by profile/tags on the Folk Unlocked conference platform. Compatible platforms include: Haivision, IBM, Mediasite, Livestream, Qwikcast, Videopress, Vimeo / Vimeo Live, Wistia, Youtube / Youtube Live.

The streaming list does not include Zoom. Can I use Zoom?

You cannot use a direct link to Zoom; however, you can live stream Zoom to a compatible platform listed above. Zoom has instructional information on how to do this for YouTube.

Can I also livestream to my own fan base?

Yes, you can promote your performance to your own fan base. We are encouraging all artists to share the public ticket link to the Unlocked Showcases.

Can I have a tip jar?

Yes, you can have a tip jar. Public attendees are encouraged to tip the artists.

What information will I need to provide FAI, and when is it due?

A form will be sent to everyone who purchased a listing by December 28, 2020. You must provide the following information:

  • Artist name
  • Date & time of performance
  • Description of show/Artist bio
  • Livestream link
  • Artist email addresses (the email address that the artist used to register for the Folk Unlocked virtual conference – this ties their virtual conference attendee profile to the listing)
  • Keywords (like genre)

Ideally the form is completed immediately so that FAI staff can start adding the showcases to the virtual conference platform, but it can be completed anytime in the month of January. The last day to purchase a listing is February 1, 2021. Those purchasing last minute will have a few days to complete their form. We will also allow for corrections to be made to the data until February 15, 2021.

Can I use pre-recorded content?

Yes, but the content must be a live recording intended for the Folk Unlocked conference. And due to licensing concerns, all pre-recorded content must be original songs or songs in the public domain. Performers who pre-record will need to get a sign-off from their label. FAI will require that all performers complete a form verifying compliance. See below for more information:


Pre-recorded Content vs Livestreamed Content

    • The intention of the Unlocked Showcases is for the artist to create a program that is specifically for the Folk Unlocked audience. Any previous recordings that were for a different audience or purpose are not appropriate for a Folk Unlocked Showcase.
    • Livestreamed content is preferred. Interaction is highly encouraged. The audience for the Unlocked Showcases is diverse. Agents, managers, festival bookers, artistic directors, and fans alike all attend this event.
    • Stipulations: If for some reason you must pre-record your show, then you should plan to have representatives online in the chat during your showcase time who can converse with potential clients and fans. Even with pre-recorded content, all of your content should be programmed specifically for the unlocked showcase audience.
    • Pre-recorded content must be provided via an external link to view. The compatible streaming platforms are Youtube, Facebook, Vimeo, Wistia, Videopress, Livestream, IBM, Twitch, DailyMotion, VidYard, and Soundcloud (audio files). We cannot accept file uploads for content.
    • For hosts: If you are the host of a 4-hour stream block and you want to showcase pre-recorded content from an artist, you need to either:
      • A. Play the pre-recorded content as part of your livestream, or
      • B. Must provide individual links to each artist’s video in your set as a separate video.

Do you have any resources for how to set up our showcase?

Yes! We recorded an online tutorial with live questions. Here is the link to the resources mentioned during the tutorial.