May 15


Late Night Talk Show Scene: Starring Musical Guests

Author: nicoleleza

Why should we care what kind of music taste late night TV hosts have?

Late night talk shows showcase the hottest musical talent while introducing audiences to new artists. This current evolving late night talk show scene has been a major boost in promoting rising musical artists. Performances on recent shows such as, “Late Night with Seth Meyers” and Jimmy Fallon’s “Tonight Show” can make for a band’s big break.

On February 18th 2014, Jimmy Fallon made a debut on NBC’s new “Tonight Show” and contributed his own music taste to the program with a popular performance from U2. Fallon will have a high need to continue to bring talented musicians on the “Tonight Show” in competition with the other late night talk shows. For example, “Late Night” has seen some great musical acts, whether it has been indie rockers (Hot Chip, Wilco, Regina Spektor, SIlversun Pickups) or classic artists (Paul McCartney, Willie Nelson, Tom Morello).

Some argue that Fallon helped the singer-songwriter, Bon Iver, gain popularity and success in 2012 from his performance on “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon”.  Check out Bon Iver’s NPR Music interview along with his live performances from “Late Night” and “The Colbert Report”.

More recently, as of April 10th 2014, Stephen Colbert takes over “The Late Show”.  This should be good news for musicians and music fans due to his track record of bringing incredible and unpredictable musical guests on his show. So far, he has brought on St. Vincent and Pussy Riot.

Since these TV shows are broadcast nationwide it proves that musical appearances have a measurable impact for artists - depending on which show results in greater audience reactions. Late night performances help artists grow their fan bases, especially on social media.
According to new research, “Why Artists are going to Love Jimmy Fallon’s New Time Slot, artists appearing on “Late Night With Jimmy Fallon” typically saw a higher impact across social networks than those appearing on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno”. Their data show that artists on Fallon saw a 15% increase in Facebook page likes and 24% increase in new Twitter followers, where as, artists on Leno typically saw a 8% increase in Facebook page likes and 14% increase in Twitter followers.

So, as new influential Talk Show host debuts take over the scene and provide well-curated music guests, we have much to look forward to in terms of great, new music. As an audience, we can only hope that these host’s music taste will stay fresh.