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Rock ‘n’ roll gets on the social-media train

Over the weekend, SmartBrief editor Rebecca Pollack bumped into singer Patrick Monahan and other members of the Grammy Award-winning band Train after a show. She asked them how they are connecting with fans on social networks.

ATLANTA — Would consumers buy a coffee-table book of TwitPics? Train lead guitarist Jimmy Stafford say he thinks so, and that’s his next idea for how to capitalize on the San Francisco rock band’s use of social media.
During each show’s performance of the song “If It’s Love,” lead singer Patrick Monahan snaps a photo from his vantage point on the stage — featuring crowds of18,000 cheering fans — and tweets it. Those tweeted photos would be compiled into a book, Stafford says after the show, flipping though the imaginary book with his back against the bar in the Omni Hotel at CNN Center. Fans who were at the different shows could go through and say, “Look! I was there!”

Train has nearly 26,000 followers on Twitter and about 322,650 friends on Facebook. The band’s website has a tab for news and a blog, as well as other social buttons, including YouTube and MySpace. Each of the band members tweet from the band’s main Twitter account, and administrative staff manages the more regular content. Hey, they’re playing a show every night, Monahan says.

Train made a special stop in Hotlanta to play for a more intimate crowd:  a couple thousand attendees of the 147th American Veterinary Medical Association annual convention. The concert was sponsored by Merial, an animal-health company.

The band was headed up to New York next to record the monthly Internet show “Live from Daryl’s House” with Daryl Hall of Hall and Oates. Hall is another artist who is looking to connect with fans online though Twitter, Facebook and MySpace.

SmartBrief’s Joe Caruso and Chris Pope contributed to this report.

Image credits: SmartBrief / Rebecca Pollack