We discuss with Stan Mcleod, CEO of Headliner, how  he uses HeadBox performance spaces to provide event planners with exquisite artists.


What’s the story behind Headliner?

Maria and I have a long history working in live music. We started out as promoters, having previously built a marketplace for emerging musicians and then founded Headliner. Throughout this time, we have had the same vision; how can we create an environment for musicians where they are able to earn a sustainable income through live performance.

We feel that Headliner gives artists the economic empowerment and control they need over their live career, whilst providing event planners unrivalled direct access and choice. By bringing the talent and talent buyer closer together, we ensure that each and every event experience is enhanced through fantastic entertainment. It’s also a great demonstration of what technology can do to improve consumer experience.

Who’s in the team?

We are a small team of 5.

Stan Mcleod – CEO
Maria Hayden – COO
Rosario Garcia De Zuniga – CTO
Elsa Cami – Design
Louise Nornes – Content Marketing / Head of Community

How did you come up with the idea?

Maria (Headliner co-founder) and I have over 20 years of collective live music experience. We were promoting events in 2010 and got into tech when we decided to make the process for connecting emerging musical talent to music venues easier. We built BandWagon, the UK’s leading booking platform for musicians. The platform has booked over 14,000 gigs in three years.When Maria and I got married in 2014, we realised just how difficult it was to book musicians and DJs for private events in performance spaces. If it was difficult for us, then it was clear that this would be a significant problem for other event planners. With our honed expertise in building large scale marketplaces and music industry experience, we saw a huge opportunity to connect the artists we had previously worked to an audience that were finding is difficult to access great musical talent.During this time, we were lucky to meet our incredible CTO, Rosario who was looking for a new challenge after exiting a company where she had been an early hire. And so, Headliner was born.

Soul Naturals and Cafe Manouche

What’s your most memorable Founding Moment?

There are probably two. The first was when we were invited out to interview for Y Combinator, the most prestigious business accelerator in the world in November 2014. The second is taking our first booking from Facebook that enabled us to put on 11 incredible acts at Abbey Road Studios for their private party. Both of these moments were a validation of the need for Headliner and the size of the opportunity we had on our hands.

The P.Y.Ts and Maria Camahort

How do you find your acts?

We work with many of the major music schools in the UK as well having very close ties to the music industry; including records labels and management. This gives us an incredible pipeline of talented musicians and DJs that we know will be a perfect match for a plethora of events. We are now able to provide entertainment at large scale events to small intimate dinners, across a multitude of genres and budget.

Why did you decide to partner with HeadBox?

Partnering with Headbox was such a easy decision. We were hugely impressed by the product and team. Ultimately, we share a very common vision and believe that our respective products are complimentary and will significantly improve the event planning experience.

What’s your favourite HeadBox space?

Wow, that’s a tough one. There are so many! Being a huge music and theatre fan, it would have to be the London Palladium. It’s one of the most incredible performance spaces, and I’d love to book some entertainment for a client there.