Hear Nebraska cultivates Lincoln's — and the state's — vibrant, fertile music and arts community.
When we say Nebraska, what do you see? When you mention Nebraska to people outside the state, what do they say?
We often ask this question. And most of the responses support the enduring, seemingly unshakeable narrative that Nebraska is flat, boring, corny, old, backwards, nowhere.
Our strengths are legitimate — it's cheap to live, it's easy to live, the people are friendly and the soil is productive. It's the good life, absolutely.
But it's not boring. It's not corny. And it has hills. Oh, it has hills.
The Nebraska we see is full of life. It's full of energy. It's full of creativity. It's full of passion.
It's full of hard-working people who want to close their eyes sometimes and connect with something greater than themselves. Sometimes, that comes in a church.
Sometimes, it's in a field.
And sometimes it's amid a sweaty crowd biting their lips and raising their fists to a musician who travelled from across the country, across the world, or across the street to perform original art at a Nebraska venue.
The Nebraska we see doesn't self deprecate. It doesn't shoegaze or "aw shucks" or say "we're sorry."
The Nebraska we see has a lot to say and it comes out in every style of voice and art and expression. And it comes with a deadeye, firm handshake.
But what really gets us excited is the creative energy in this state. It's the ability to surround oneself with brewers and chefs, developers and designers, songwriters and poets, farmers and carpenters who are all driven to create something original, something uniquely them.
Here, people have to do it themselves. DIY is in this state's DNA.
And that's what makes Hear Nebraska so crucial. Our people tell vivid stories about these people and disseminate them to the world. While 60 percent of our site's audience comes from Nebraska, 40 percent comes from outside the state. And 7 percent comes from outside the country.
We produce events that bring together people across disciplines, races, ages and sexes to experience something new and always something surprising. And we have our finger on the pulse of the young people who are deciding whether they should make a life somewhere else, or stay and make that life here.
We've trained more than 30 interns who put elbow grease into developing their personal craft, and our mission. And we've proven how far you can stretch a shoestring.
We don't know what you see when you picture Nebraska. But we know what we see.
At Hear Nebraska, we work our asses off to make sure the rest of the world sees it, too. Join us.