iConcertCal is a free iTunes plug-in that monitors your music library and generates a personalized calendar of upcoming concerts in your city. It is available for both Windows and Mac OS X.
iConcertCal is a bit of a clumsy name, but I like the implementation. The idea of a gig notification website was something a friend and I did a little preparatory work on a few months ago. It’s a distinct gap in the market – how many times have you discovered too late that a band was playing in your local area, but the concert is sold out or it took place two days ago? How great would it be if you could visit one easy to use website, select the bands whose gigs you want to be notified of, submit your email address and forget about the whole thing until you receive an email saying that band X have announced they’re visiting your town in two months’ time and you can ‘buy your tickets by clicking on this link’. After some initial research, it turned out this wasn’t exactly an original idea and ultimately, it looked like too much work so we shelved it. None of the sites we looked at though, were as easy to use as our concept which was built around a set of expanding choices in an Ajax interface that aspired to the simplicity of the Google homepage.
These people (their About page states “We are not a company and this is not a commercial venture. We are just two grad students in electrical engineering. We wrote this plug-in in our spare time because we were tired of missing concerts for our favorite bands and we figured other people probably are too” – my hats off to them!) have taken an attractively different approach by integrating their interface into iTunes and using iTunes’ library as a basis on which to search the web for relevant listings. Very nice. Unfortunately it doesn’t list a single upcoming concert. I know I have fairly obscure music tastes, but a quick read of the FAQ revealed that it doesn’t do listings outside the US which is a great shame. Fingers crossed that the service can be extended.