2014 SXSW Interactive Session Spotlight: Do It Together Is the New Do It Yourself

Written by Megan Simpson | February 17, 2014

Nick DePrey talks about DIY entertainment at SXSW 2014

The Co-founder of Homestage, Nick DePrey says his creative drive is often inspired by envy of what others have done. As someone who believes they can do anything, he’s driven to tackle creative projects when he sees others succeeding. On March 10th he’ll speak to this during “Do it Together is the New Do it Yourself”, the topic of this installment of the Session Spotlight. Follow him on Twitter @nickdeprey where he often tweets about music, tech, and politics and promotes his Homestage events, as well as his own music.

SXSW: What do you mean by DIT as the new DIY? What does your session address?
DePrey: Never let the resources of one individual limit the potential of the community as a whole. We want to establish Washington, DC as THE location for live concerts in your living room. So we launched Homestage, a grassroots organization dedicated to nurturing the blossoming house show scene in our community. Our bottom line is the proliferation of live in-home entertainment through our efforts. Here we discuss the process of establishing Homestage.us and where we plan to go in the future.

SXSW: Have you spoken about this previously?
DePrey: Only informally at house shows and gatherings related to DIY entertainment. The reaction to the ideas and they way they are presented is always very positive. People love the concept of house shows and DIY entertainment, and we are bridging the gaps between the underground nature of this type of event with the public.

SXSW: You’re sharing this dual conversation with Catherine Woodiwiss. What can you tell us about her?
DePrey: Catherine Woodiwiss is the co-founder of Homestage. She works on community organization and is also a BIG ideas person like me. You can follow her on Twitter @chwoodiwiss.

SXSW: What types of people should attend your session?
DePrey: Event planners, musicians, and those involved in booking talent would be most interested. But what Homestage has uncovered is a model for community collaboration beyond just music and house shows. Anyone trying to accomplish something as a community would be interested in our approach.

SXSW: Let’s say someone doesn’t know anything about this topic – will they still be able to follow the conversation? What will all attendees gain?
DePrey: No prior knowledge is required. An attendant will gain an understanding for the role that house shows play in a "scene" and why they are necessary. Attendants will also understand what it means to engage a community with an idea and bring that idea to fruition. Finally attendants will get a feel for a lean and virtually free technology approach to creating assets a community needs.

SXSW: What do you do to relax and unwind?
DePrey: I like to listen to musical artists I've never heard. Fully engaging yourself in a completely unfamiliar record is absolutely freeing. Lately I've been listening to jazz trios from the late 60s. I also really enjoy fiction. Currently I am 2/3 of the way through David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest and making a final push to complete it soon.

SXSW: Not necessarily related to your speaking topic at SXSW, what is your favorite movie from the last year?
DePrey: I don't watch a lot of Hollywood movies, but PT Anderson's "The Master" was a really incredible film, carried on the backs of Philip Seymour Hoffman and Joaquin Phoenix's brilliant work.

Watch this website for more installments of the 2014 SXSW Interactive Session Spotlight. Click here for the complete list of programming for March in Austin. For tips on interesting sessions to attend, visit the new Recommendation page. Register now to attend “Do It Together Is the New Do It Yourself” and other incredible programming at SXSW Interactive 2014.