Summer Cancelled?

With COVID cases still on the rise, concerts and festivals are forced to cancel or reschedule.

Summer has finally arrived, and one of the best parts is all the outdoor concerts and festivals with your friends. Music is a vital part of everyone’s summer. However, this year your favorite festival outfit bought months in advance out of pure excitement might be left hanging in the closet.  

While some businesses are slowly starting to open up, venues and bars are last on that list. Large gatherings of people, alcohol and no space to distance have made everyone’s favorite concerts and festivals a distant memory. Coachella and Stagecoach, two staples in the music and arts community, have been postponed until October of this year. Another big hit to the entertainment industry was the cancelation of South by Southwest: a conglomeration of music, film, media and tech.  Every award show, festival, conference, tour and concert around the country have been postponed or outright canceled this year; it feels as if music has stopped. 

From the biggest festivals down to local musicians who can’t play at their usual bars or local venues anymore, coronavirus has halted live music across the nation. However, some events that have been postponed until the end of summer seem to still be holding onto hope that summer isn’t canceled just shorter. Lollapalooza, a music festival in Chicago, is still scheduled to start at the end of July. However, they have yet to announce which artists will be headlining this year. 

Album, merchandise and individual song sales have all taken a dip during coronavirus. With in person concerts halted, musicians depend on their sales and streaming services. One Independent artist, Tory Lanez, didn’t let quarantine stop the drop of his new album The New Toronto 3.  Lanez did zero promotion for the album, not caring if his last album with Interscope Records sells.  He’s placed confidence and appreciation in his fans. 

Coronavirus seems to be taking over everyone’s thoughts, even musician’s inspiration. From less known artists such as Miles Tone who created the song “We Have It,” made up of President Trump’s statements about COVID-19, to Mr. Worldwide’s anthem for the world “I Believe That We Will Win,” For people who need emotional outlets, music has always been a good coping mechanism. 

 Artists are being forced to get creative and experiment with concerts on different platforms, influencing the future of concerts and their streaming methods.  Instagram allows interaction between the viewers and streamer during the live stream.  

In an attempt to keep the music industry interactive, artists have turned to online performances. Some artists are taking part in online graduation ceremonies for those who had their commencement canceled due to the pandemic. What has been deemed the graduation of 2020, hosted by Oprah Winfrey, took place on Facebook featuring Miley Cyrus along with several other musicians. A virtual graduation to celebrate all of the highschool and college graduates who’s ceremonies have been canceled, postponed or switched to virtual commencements. 

People are adapting the best they can in this technological era to get their live music fix. D-Nice continued to DJ in quarantine on Instagram live, Travis Scott did a live concert through Fortnite, and artists from all over the entertainment industry came together for the “One World: Together at Home” concert to raise money to help fight COVID-19. It seems as if every artist is taking this time to be a part of one, or several, awareness and fundraising events.

These concerts are a nice way to band together while communities remain at a stand still. Professionals from all different sectors of entertainment are taking this time to get creative and collaborate, using their talents to benefit communities in need. These virtual experiences don’t replace the experience of a live festival or real-life human contact, but this isn’t forever. 

One day we will all be able to pull our body glitter out again and dance so hard we sweat out our favorite drink. Music festivals and concerts transcend the experience of listening to your favorite song at home.  We just have to remain patient for a little longer so all the people who make those experiences memorable can safely come together again.