A new locally owned event company called Extrinsic has dramatically expanded the music scene in Montana in the last year. Extrinsic was created in 2014 by a local entrepreneur, Connor Lorenz, a 20 year-old who graduated from West High School in 2015.
The company started selling clothes during concerts in the winter of 2014. In 2015 they started creating events for the youth as well as bringing popular artists from all over the country to the Big Sky State. The company was created after a group of college friends were bored one weekend night with nothing to do in Butte, Montana.
“We spent the first weekend of the semester in Butte and it was one of the most boring weekends of my life.” said Connor Lorenz. “I was like, ‘I absolutely need to change this, we need to do something. We need to start figuring out something to do.’ So I got to thinking of an idea that would bring some life back to the communities in the state.”
Lorenz saw the need for the creation of safe entertainment for the local youth in the state. He claimed that during his high school career in Billings, there were not many sources of healthy entertainment for the youth.
“Back in high school we really didn’t have anything to do or a place to go that wouldn’t get you in trouble,” said Lorenz.
In 2014, the business became involved with the music industry by selling apparel during concerts in Billings. In 2015, the company expanded and created their own themed events and holiday parties around the state. Now, Extrinsic focuses on concerts with major hip-hop artists not only in Billings, but all over the country.
“We are working in so many different markets and we have team members in seven different Montana markets,” Lorenz said. “ We have shows coming up Billings, Bozeman, Butte, Missoula, Helena and Great Falls. We also have upcoming shows in Spokane, working out in Seattle, down in Phoenix, Arizona. We’ve done shows in Denver. We have done shows in Reno, Nevada, Boise, Minneapolis and Iowa City.”
Lorenz started his college career in Butte and majored in petroleum engineering, but he found that after one semester, it wasn’t his calling. He transferred to Montana State University in Bozeman to major in business management; however after one semester, he decided to finish a business marketing degree online through MSU Billings while working on Extrinsic.
The first event that Extrinsic hosted was in what used to be the Holiday Inn Convention Center. The event was called “Summer in the School Year” and it was aimed at the high school crowd.
“We announced it like seven days before the show,” said Lorenz. “We were thinking we were going to do something low key. We thought maybe we would do one hundred or two hundred people, and we ended up having almost five hundred people.”
After that event, Lorenz and his team decided that they needed to expand in the event industry. A month later, Extrinsic hosted another event in Billings called, “Black Light Night” and sold over 900 tickets.
“It was outrageous,” said Lorenz. “It was super packed, and it was a really good memory for a lot of people that attended the event.” said Lorenz.
A new report from the Kauffman Index of Startup Activity shows that 550,000 Americans launch new businesses each month, keeping with an upward pattern in entrepreneurship in recent years. However, college students work with a tight budget, and it is hard for a full-time student to be able to have enough income to invest in a company. The first shows that Extrinsic hosted created enough revenue and gave them the ability to have a budget to bring in quality artists in the future.
“Originally we didn’t have the budget,” said Lorenz. “We were all college students and we didn’t have that much to spend on bringing acts and artists. So those first two shows were really good kick starters to give us a budget to be able to bring the artists, and that’s where we started with the events.”
According to Lorenz, the actual word extrinsic itself means “coming from outside,” therefore being different than the regular. As it is very important in today’s society to stand out and not be the same as another, this company offers that opportunity. The goal of the company is to provide individuals with meaningful experiences and create memories that will last a lifetime.
“It is stressful at times, but is very rewarding too.” said Lorenz. “Not so much in the monetary sense, but moments like at the end of the night when people are leaving and I hear they had an amazing time at the event. Giving people that entertainment and something to hold on to. Memories are huge to me,”
Extrinsic has brought a variety of famous hip-hop artists including Russ, The Game, Afroman, Dej Loaf, Kirko Bangz and Lil Jon. Throughout his music career, Lil Jon has accumulated $27 million in net worth, which makes him one of the wealthiest rappers/producers on the planet. Extrinsic also focuses on helping local artists by giving them opening slots in big concerts. Local artists have the opportunity to grow their fan base and get experience performing.
“I want Extrinsic as the face of hip-hop in Montana,” said Lorenz.
The company’s biggest event so far took place Oct. 27 in Missoula, Montana at the Adam Center and presented Tyga, Lil Pump and Famous Dex. Extrinsic hosts events in several different venues across the state and the city including: The Pub Station, DoubleTree by Hilton, The Shrine, The MetraPark Arena, Monks Bar and Bones Arcade.
The next Extrinsic event hosted in Billings will present Shwayze Nov. 29 at the Pub Station. You can find more information on upcoming shows and apparel at shopextrinsic.com, or in the Extrinsic Facebook page.