Ever since she was a preteen, Elah Shalev would wait hours, general admissions ticket in hand, to be in the front row of every concert she saw. Years of singing along to her favorite songs live, watching musicians perform their art and connecting with other audience members fuel the inspirations for her live-performance blog.
Shalev, a marketing sophomore and a lifelong Austinite, runs Ever Alive Music, a blog where she provides followers with her thoughts and reflections on performances. After attending her first concert in eighth grade, she has reported on five Austin City Limits music festivals, two SXSWs and 58 concerts.
Even if the blog did not have an audience, Shalev said she would do still write about her experiences. She initially began documenting her experiences to create more writing samples for jobs she was applying for, but now, reflecting on the shows she attends gives Shalev personal fulfillment beyond the web-base it reaches.
“It’s become a way for me to allow other people to experience concerts the way I experience them, and to share my passions,” said Shalev. “I catalog these concerts as a way to share my life with an audience and for my own personal collection.”
Though her initial foray into music began with a One Direction phase, she has since started to explore the Austin music scene and has strayed from mainstream music.
She prefers smaller, more local bands because she feels their concerts are more personal.
“It’s nicer when you’re up close, instead of in a faraway seat,” Shalev said. “There’s just a lot more interaction. Plus, I like to see these bands grow.”
She initially considered applying to the Butler School of Music but ultimately chose to enroll in the McCombs School of Business because she wanted to pursue an education that would prepare her for any sort of career.
“McCombs provides a good balance for finding a degree that can prepare me for any career, whether it involves working with music or not,” said Shalev.
Undeclared sophomore Marisa DePuyt took a course with Shalev where the class was assigned a project to create and develop an idea for an application called “Concert Buddies.” The app matches concert goers with people with similar musical tastes. DePuyt said she is inspired by Shalev.
“Elah is a great example of how people are able to combine two of their interests, in her case music and business,” said DePuyt.
Biology junior Claire Culbertson connected with Shalev through mutual concert friends. She said their bond with each other has been strengthened because of their shared music interests.
“It’s wild how interconnected the music scene in Texas can be,” said Culbertson. “Instead of grabbing dinner to catch up like normal friends, we go to shows together and do our catching up while we wait for the artists to come on. It’s so easy to make friends in line at concerts because you automatically have loving the music in common with the people around you.”
Shalev loves live performances because she feels they allow her to interact with the artists and show them how much their music means to her.
“I am happiest when I am at a live show with people who share my passion and interests,” said Shalev. “Which is why I want to work in the music business — to turn my passion into my career.”