Truly, nothing beats the rush of live music. The adrenaline rush, the raw power of the performers, the energetic crowd, that gigantic wall of sound with a drink in hand is truly unbeatable!
Concerts, gigs, whatever you call them—have been one of the most interactive forms of entertainment, as they require you to be at the event itself. Sadly, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the face of live music as we know it.
Of course, most businesses are feeling the burn, but it’s the live music industry that won’t be seeing the light of day anytime soon. International acts like Slipknot have already cancelled the remaining dates of their tour and most local acts are resorting to social media for fund raisers tied in with their live performances.
From bar gigs to intimate DJ Sets, basically, the live artform is on lockdown was well.
Weird times indeed.
It doesn’t really matter what genre you actually play. You can be the poppiest act with the biggest songs, or you can be the heaviest, noisiest of the bunch but the fact is, live music’s suspension for the meantime has brought a great deal of anxiety and uncertainty among performers, establishment owners and booking agents. Take in consideration those who take care of the lights and sounds and yes the most hard working roadies who are paid nightly.
Also, merchandise such as tour shirts are now being sold on a discount online. At the beginning of the year, many acts invested on them and are now forced to sell them online at a fraction of their original gate prices.
From Green Day, to Alanis Morissette, to Slipknot, to Alanis Morissette to Kamikazee and Shanti Dope, everyone is definitely facing more challenging times, but with some adjustments, the industry can still be alive and kicking in no time.
Aside from drive-In concerts and live streaming platforms, industry experts are predicting that normal live shows won’t return until 2021.
With the new normal, it may take awhile for everyone to take in this new way of enjoying live music in a more disciplined social setting in the future.
This may be a welcome alternative but to be taken with a grain of salt as well.
The New Normal
The need to breathe life in a struggling industry may be jarring and totally unorthodox concept to some, but these steps may be the only chances we have in saving the live music industry. Yes, it will take a little getting used to. Call it the New Normal but they should be observed fast.
In an article by Consequence of Sound, some of these recommendations include the following:
- Establishing firm sanitizing practices. From the wearing of masks to sanitizing, everyone will be asked to observe proper sanitation and hygiene.
- Handling guest illnesses. If ever a guest gets sick and it occurs in the venue, there should be a proper way to go around it before it gets worse, medics should be within reach to save time and lives as well.
- Taking care of the employees. From protective gear to health insurance to routine check ups, this is totally a must to ensure the safety of the employees and the performers.
- Observing Staggered Entry Lines at the venue. Enforcing a healthy social distance upon entry as attendees pay for the tickets should be a must.
- Establishing Contactless Merch Purchases. Whether it’s pre-ordering the shirts to be claimed at the venue, or observing a fair distance at the merch booth, safety is everything.
- Banning Moshing and Crowdsurfing. Because abrasive body contact in a show is the last thing you’d want for the meantime. Yet the show must go on.
A lot of stuff to be considered? An overload of rules? Not Rock N’ Roll enough? While that is a sad thought, it is better to have shows with rules than none at all.
*You can read the 29-page PDF of the Event Safety Alliance Guide here.
What can you say about this? Will you consider watching live shows with the new normal guidelines, or would you rather watch at the comfort of your own homes instead?
Photos by Duey Guison