How Musicians are Dealing with the Quarantine


Andrew Jenkins, Staff Writer

With major limitations on where we can go due to the Coronavirus outbreak; it is hard to do much of anything fun beyond where we live. Many industries have been hit hard because of this, but none have been hit quite as hard as the music industry. 


In the latter days of February and the early days of March, a substantial amount of live concerts and music festivals were canceled due to concerns about the outbreak. This was one of the first mass cancellations that would occur before this outbreak lost control. Soon after, Livenation announced it was canceling every show it had booked in the last year and to much outrage Ticketmaster decided they would not be giving refunds for already purchased tickets.


Now with even Coachella canceled,it seems impossible to listen to live music, that’s a fair judgment but not true! Many artists have been joining together and performing live for their fans. Although it is a different type of performance, of course it may also have a feeling of unity. Many big-name artists including Billie Eilish, James Blake, Neil Young, and many others have been constantly live streaming from the comfort of their own homes in order to keep the spirit of live music alive while we are all stuck inside our homes. 


Many other artists including Radiohead, King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard, Idles, and Pink Floyd, have been live streaming old concerts, and most notably K-Pop group BTS live-streamed for two days straight with Bang-con. Some of these live-streams were even brand new concert films or concerts that were hard to find on the internet to watch. 


The hardest part of the quarantine for musicians is that due to streaming services it makes it hard for them to make money during this because live shows were usually the main source of income for smaller musicians, and now with all live shows at a halt, it makes it very hard for these artists to make a living. To counter this, music streaming/publication service Bandcamp has been waiving all fees, giving musicians the chance to make nearly 100% of the revenue they make through the service. Iin the last 30 days, Bandcamp has raised over $13 million for artists. 


On April 18th, Lady Gaga put together a program, which raised about $127 million to battle Coronavirus, called One World: Together. The lengthy program featured performances by many popular artists like Lady Gaga herself, Billie Eilish, The Killers, Paul McCartney, Elton John, and many many more.


It is unclear when live shows will return but some reports have been saying the earliest could be in 2021, which means it is important that musicians are still able to make a living doing what they love. With the quarantine in full effect, and many artists basically without jobs, it should come as no surprise what I’m about to say; support your local or favorite artists!

Here is a list of all the artists with upcoming live streams, including a few virtual festivals.