Dumpster Analytics

The blizzard cancelled our Philadelphia show and sent the GusBus on a mad dash west to avoid Jonas on Saturday. After a dicey drive we landed in Pittsburgh for an unexpected day off — we love us some PGH and they only got like 5 inches of snow total. It was a nice choice.

After watching 4 hours of CNN reporters in ski goggles we got bored and decided to go play a “Dumpster Set” somewhere in town. We picked a nice blue dumpster over near the Mexican War Streets neighborhood, and at 1:15 we tweeted the location out on the socials:


That gave people in Pittsburgh 45 minutes to learn about the show, find the dumpster, and enjoy a spontaneous random Guster concert.  The hope was that, since it was a weekend, maybe we’d get like 30 people to show up.  Eleven people did.

But we had a great time!  We planted our glockenspiel right in the snow, took a few requests, connected with some fans who were STOKED, and had a great day.  Our old friend Liz who used to work in the Guster office video’d the performance and uploaded it to Facebook Live — which is a Periscope kind of deal.  The battery on Liz’s phone ran out in the middle of This Could All Be Yours.  Afterwards we took a group photo:


And then we went on our merry way, visiting some awesome Pittsburgh museums and getting some life lessons from Randy at Randyland (please google the man).  Great day!  We got back to the bus a few hours later and defrosted our frozen feet.  And someone said “hey, that dumpster set is up to 40,000 views.”

And we were perplexed.  We’re not YouTube sensations by any stretch, and we can generally count on like 700 views of something we want to share with our fans.  The closest thing that we’ve ever been to viral was this video where I tried to carry my twin babies in a Moby Wrap.  Our video for “Endlessly” involved CGI whales and three drone operators.  Since we put it up in August, it’s gotten 25,000 views.

Today, as of this post, the Dumpster Set has 135,000 views, in less than 24 hours.  We are blown away.  We literally played that set to entertain ourselves and the eleven people that showed up.  We were so sad to miss our Philadelphia show on Saturday but instead it’s like we reached the number of people we’d reach by playing 3 stadium shows.  I realize this reads like “old band finally figures out that internet works” — but check this out.  Because of the video’s reach, Ryan tweeted with the Mayor of Pittsburgh this morning:



20 people and 2 dogs!  Who knew the Mayor of Pittsburgh had such Twitter Game?





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15 responses to “Dumpster Analytics

  1. I think this should probably also happen in Knoxville or Louisville. Big fan of all the live streams — from a dumpster or the GusBus and beyond.

  2. Mike Penda

    Location, location, location. You should include a dumpster in your stage setup.

  3. You should definitely come back and be part of the Deutschtown Music Festival on July 9th

  4. Danny Arnold

    Watched you live from NH I wondered what happened to the feed…damned batteries!!!!!

  5. Cindy

    Loved the show. Watched the video. Almost as good as watching the show that was planned. Better in some ways 🤓

  6. John

    Guster rocks! Love the journal, Brian. Keep it coming!

  7. Lynne B

    Got to watch it live from Philly, I will be there w my family June 16th for the rescheduled concert. Now I know why the dumpster set cut off- it was so cool of Guster to do this. Just don’t get TOO popular, I don’t want to have a hard time getting tix lol

  8. CV

    I’m a fan from Beantown, saw you at the Pavillion, and I think Mansfield — had I been closer, I definitely would’ve stopped by for the Dumpster set.

  9. Lauren

    Yes! Would have been there, but didn’t know till it was over because it was Shabbat (we unplug on Shabbat). Longtime fan originally from Boston, would love to see you back in my new favorite city PGH (only not on the sabbath). Ps, mayor Peduto is the best.

  10. I caught the concert sitting in my living room in Baltimore, MD; the heavy stuff already coming down. I felt shared with and special. I was warm and entertained…gifted. Thank you.

  11. Love that you guys do weird stuff like that. See you in Philly in June.

  12. Kate

    That’s awesome! I can’t wait for your show here tomorrow night in Louisville! I’ll have to check out the vid when I get to work, yawn, stretch… Time for some coffee 🙂

  13. Kate B.

    We can’t wait for your show tomorrow night here in Louisville! So happy you are coming our way!

  14. Ok, first time I’ve seen that baby wearing video. That’s hilarious. My favorite comment – “Was he drunk? Oh Brooklyn hipsters, everything’s funny till you injure you babies.”

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