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HomeConcertWanting past the pandemic – Brooke Harwood and Jolene Zhu Zhou |

Wanting past the pandemic – Brooke Harwood and Jolene Zhu Zhou |

Dwell Music Trade Weblog


This put up options two items from the LMX scholar interns – Brooke Harwood and Jolene Zhu Zhou – wanting on the impact of social distancing on reside music and, with an finish to the pandemic hopefully in sight, at a few of the rising prospects for performers and the reside music sector at giant.

Brooke Harwood – A New Period of Musical Efficiency

Jolene Zhu Zhou – The Present Should Go On(line)

Brooke Harwood – A New Period of Musical Efficiency

The music trade is consistently adapting. Within the early 2000s, it was not possible to think about that vinyl information would quickly overtake CD gross sales and a full reside live performance could possibly be streamed from a cell phone. As we close to the one-year anniversary of the COVID-19 pandemic, the music scene will as soon as once more develop. From on-line writing collaborations to cinematic tv broadcasts, the pandemic has inspired artists to search out new and inventive methods to offer musical efficiency as nationwide restrictions persist. If we’re to know what to anticipate from reside music post-2020, this new period of musical efficiency should be explored.

Dwell concert events to a packed viewers stay not possible in lots of international locations with social distancing measures nonetheless in place. On account of this, music artists have been pressured to heighten their creativity in televised performances to offer followers with a lot wanted leisure all through lockdown. Because the BBC studies, on-line streaming all through the pandemic has pressured for musical broadcasts, with a purpose to fight social media rivals. In consequence, artists have gained the capability to create cinematic-styled tv broadcasts with the hope of compensating for cancelled reside concert events.

Alex Lill, a movie director with explicit expertise in music video manufacturing explains the motive behind cinematic performances to the BBC:

Earlier than the pandemic even hit we had been attempting to reimagine how we may present a cinematic expertise for the viewers at residence, not simply the reside viewers. When Covid began and reside audiences had been out the window, solely then had been we given extra licence by varied tv networks and platforms to pursue this new method.

This cinematic expertise will be seen inside varied televised performances and livestreams for the reason that begin of the pandemic in March 2020.

A noteworthy instance could also be Pa Salieu’s look on The Tonight Present starring Jimmy Fallon, on the 22nd of January this yr. On account of journey restrictions between the US and UK, Salieu was unable to look in individual on the American present. In mild of this, the networkallowed Salieu to pre-record an virtually music video worthy efficiency that will be aired reside on the present. His efficiency concerned pitbulls, vehicles, a grocery retailer set and was distinctively totally different to pre-Covid musical appearances on The Tonight Present that will normally be carried out reside on set, with little to nothing by means of props. Regardless of being pre-recorded, Salieu’s efficiency seems to have been successful as reviewers and viewers feedback spotlight:

[T]his man simply made a music video reside on stage.

The beneficial viewers response to Salieu’s look on The Tonight Present means that theatrical or cinematic musical recordings could also be utilised in tv following the COVID-19 pandemic because the trade strikes into a brand new period of music efficiency.

One other sector that has developed has music performances have taken account of the pandemic is that of live performance experiences. Previous to Coronavirus, followers had the choice to pay premium ticket costs to satisfy their favorite artists backstage following a live performance. Nonetheless, specialists throughout the trade report that these “meet and greets could also be a factor of the previous”. The expertise can be reserved for round 100 viewers members and historically concerned a hug, fast dialog and photograph with the artist. Nonetheless, post-2020, the unavoidable well being dangers of this private interplay has now triggered the meet and greet choice to be eliminated from most live performance ticket packages.

Regardless of this, many artists recognise the significance of one-on-one fan interactions and so have explored inventive strategies in offering this valued live performance expertise following the pandemic. The cell app, Cameo, permits followers to pay for a personalised video message from their chosen movie star. Many artists have turned to apps like Cameo to offer followers with ‘digital autographs’ while reside concert events meet and greets stay not possible.

Editors of the JS journal argue that personalised video messages are a optimistic consequence of the Coronavirus pandemic that can improve conventional meet and greets post-2020:

This digital spin on conventional meet and greets undoubtedly elevates the fan expertise, and is a significant piece of memorabilia you possibly can view time and again.

Past this, reside music trade specialists hypothesise that ticketing may also turn into more and more digitalised, post-2020. With the event of e-tickets via smartphones, the paper ticket for big occasions was already in decline, previous to 2020. Nonetheless, to keep away from pointless contact between venue employees and viewers members, bodily tickets for reside music occasions could possibly be deserted following the pandemic.

Graham Micone, vp of music and leisure at Momentum Worldwide, writes in an interview for Cosmopolitan journal:

Issues will seemingly look a bit totally different th[a]n they had been pre-COVID-19, […] Line entry into venues will seemingly be staggered and tickets might be paperless, everybody simply having their gadgets scanned.

While this might be disappointing information for followers with countless paper tickets taped to their bed room wall, the safety of viewers and employees well being should stay the precedence.

Lastly, the brand new context for efficiency may additionally see the reputation of intimate concert events rise within the wake of the Coronavirus. As beforehand talked about, giant viewers capability stays difficult in 2021, as a result of persevering with social distancing measures. Consequently, some specialists consider that smaller venues could turn into the everyday live performance setting post-pandemic.

Journalist, Adam Aziz, suggests that intimate live performance settings will present followers with a extra private expertise:

[T]right here is a chance for mid to lower-level artists to swallow their satisfaction and take into account getting even nearer to their followers. There is a chance for road or literal yard excursions throughout the nation for artists to proceed to generate some earnings, construct social content material, and make touring work within the meantime.

Smaller venues give the benefit of full viewers capability while sustaining social distancing and so could also be the absolute best possibility for live performance settings following the COVID-19 pandemic.

The concept of intimate concert events was partially examined in August 2020, on the UK’s first socially distanced competition. Right here, ticket-holders had been saved strictly separated with one another in respect of presidency security pointers. Viewers reactions had been enormously in favour of the brand new set-up and a few took to Twitter to voice their approval:

‘My hatred for human contact with individuals I don’t know actually, realllyyy approves of this,’


This viewers response to this socially-distanced competition gives some hope for intimate concert events post-pandemic because it emphasises that giant and uncontained crowds aren’t important to reside music efficiency.

While the pandemic has triggered unimaginable losses for the music trade, it’s clear that artists are keen and decided to adapt to a brand new period of musical efficiency. Elaborate, cinematic performances have turn into the norm for musical tv appearances and could be the manner ahead for broadcasters as they compete with on-line streaming. Live performance experiences have additionally been tailored on account of the pandemic with the emergence of smaller venue concert events and digitalised fan experiences. While it could be some time earlier than reside efficiency resumes, the creativity of artists and trade staff all through the pandemic brings us religion that the post-COVID period of music might be one to look ahead to.

Jolene Zhu Zhou – The Present Should Go On(line)

Though the impact of coronavirus on the reside music trade is undoubtedly devastating, some individuals have discovered a silver lining: reside streaming. With music venues giant and small being pressured to close all over the world, artists haven’t any alternative however to show to livestreaming to carry out for followers, and there are some instances that may point out how evolutionary this format will be.

Okay-Pop superstars BTS made practically $20m in June 2020 from a single digital live performance “Bang Bang Con: The Dwell” the place followers had been supplied a front-row expertise that attracted 756,600 concurrent viewers from 107 areas.

Likewise, former One Course member Niall Horan carried out a livestream gig in an empty Royal Albert Corridor in London which offered greater than 120,000 tickets, surpassing the capability of the venue itself, to boost funds for his touring crew and the ‘We Want Crew’ fund. His live performance attracted followers from greater than 150 international locations worldwide who joined and watched the singer carry out.

One of the widespread European music festivals, Tomorrowland, additionally hosted their first digital expertise, calling it “Tomorrowland Across the World”. With tickets priced between €12.50 (approx. £10) and €20 (approx. £17), over 1 million paid to attend the digital competition, that means the competition revamped £10 million over one single weekend.

Huge names equivalent to Spotify and Amazon have already jumped on this boat. Music large Spotify teamed up with Songkick (an app that connects concert-goers with artists) and Ticketmaster final September to make entry to digital occasions simpler for his or her audiences and to assist artists out on this interval the place excursions are being cancelled on account of COVID-19. The best way this new characteristic works is that artists can checklist their occasions via Songkick, host their occasion via varied platforms equivalent to Twitch and Instagram Dwell after which, as soon as it’s on Spotify, add it to their “Artist Decide” in order that the live performance is on the high of their profile. Spotify can then elevate extra consciousness by sending suggestions to followers to get the phrase out.

Amazon additionally seized this chance and launched a reside streaming perform inside Twitch (primarily a gaming platform that’s owned by Amazon) whose reputation skyrocketed through the pandemic. Musicians additionally hyperlink their Twitch account to Amazon Music the place their efficiency might be broadcasted on the Amazon Music app concurrently and followers might be notified when the streaming begins.

Smaller companies are additionally tuning in to those new technological options. However with out names as huge as these beforehand talked about, they’re wanting extra on the inventive facet. Many have picked up on what Amazon and Spotify lack – the connection between artist and fan, a necessary high quality of the reside expertise.

It isn’t solely tech giants which can be responding to the expansion in reside music on-line. Smaller firms are additionally getting into the fray, and looking for to handle a few of the issues round streaming reside music on-line – the hole between the ‘reside expertise’ and the mediated nature of livestreams.

Though they’re a start-up firm, Driift’s providers do actually revolutionise attending livestreamed concert events, which characteristic in-performance reside video fan chat rooms; pal sourcing at present via breakout chat room; ‘non-public bins’ for teams of pals (video chat); and ‘non-public rooms’ for meet and greets (additionally video chats). All of those elements replicate facets of the expertise of going to a live performance in individual, particularly the latter which ticks off the field of fan and artist interactions with the one distinction being that of truly having the ability to see individuals face-to-face. Nonetheless, Driift has already gained huge success as a manufacturing firm for livestreaming gigs, together with producing Niall Horan’s aforementioned Albert Corridor.

Periods, co-founded by Tim Westergen, emphasise artist and fan interactions much more: not solely can artists cost for exhibits and bundle merch with on-line ticket gross sales – which ensures income for the performer –  its particular characteristic known as “Purchase Love” permits extra transactions within the type of digital items for the artist. Followers may also pay to request songs and stand out extra in order that artists discover their efforts and contributions. What can be interesting about this platform is that it helps these upcoming artists who need assistance greater than ever earlier than to interrupt into the trade, in addition to established ones equivalent to Ceelo Inexperienced and Daniel Caesar.

To date, the instances mentioned have all been about livestreaming platforms. However Nick Dangerfield used one other enterprise mannequin for these new advances: audio system known as ‘Oda’ that mimic the sensation of an in-person present when broadcasting reside performances. The audio system themselves value $399 (approx. £292), and the enterprise mannequin additionally incorporates a membership priced at $79 (approx. £58) for each three months the place the line-up of performers change each season. The expertise of the product is described as “two cans and a string” because the artists craft their very own sound, controlling each element heard as they activate the audio system themselves with the press of a button. What additional differentiates this from the opposite providers is that the efficiency is performed at residence, not via a telephone or a browser.

With new alternatives, new challenges additionally come up. One essential issue to attending concert events is that the fan can see the efficiency of an artist that they already know and like. Though the Oda audio system are very revolutionary, the query stays of whether or not the music of the altering lineup might be to the viewers’s liking? The one recognisable names they’ve labored with up to now are Woman Gaga and Mark Ronson, who’re nevertheless, not included within the performing artists checklist. The identical difficulty will be utilized to Periods, though (as talked about earlier than) in addition they embody extra well-known artists and there’s much less monetary dedication concerned as customers should purchase particular person tickets with no membership price or extra {hardware} prices.

Typically talking, there are nonetheless many points that should be solved. How do you’re employed out the worth of a digital ticket? Is the variety of Instagram followers of the artist a great indicator for pricing fashions? Are you able to depend on the present expertise to let doubtlessly hundreds of thousands of followers in via the digital door in lower than 10 minutes?

To interchange reside concert events with digital ones, firms have to put fan engagements on the coronary heart of their service or product. Know-how can create superb visible representations digitally, however this nonetheless won’t be as particular as an in-person expertise – listening to the general public scream when the artist first seems on the stage, seeing the entire venue full of floating lights as individuals wave their light-sticks within the air, voices responding when the artist flip their mic to the viewers. But additionally think about the potential development of the music trade if these solutions are discovered. Perhaps the reside occasion on-line will even turn into an expertise itself, quite than a substitute for reside concert events while we await a pandemic to finish.  

Rafael Gomes de Azevedo
Rafael Gomes de Azevedo
He started his career as a columnist, contributing to the staff of a local blog. His articles with amusing views on everyday situations in the news soon became one of the main features of the current editions of the blog. For the divergences of thought about which direction the blog would follow. He left and founded three other great journalistic blogs,, and With a certain passion for writing, holder of a versatile talent, in addition to coordinating, directing, he writes fantastic scripts quickly, he likes to say that he writes for a select group of enthusiasts in love with serious and true writing.


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