Where does the music industry stand now?

With curfews, tiered rules and the pandemic persisting, the entertainment industry — which music ultimately sits under — is still in disarray. None of us would’ve put any money on being in the position we were back in March but, let’s face it, we all imagined we would’ve been through the worst of this sorry affair by now, too. 

As the physical and mental health of the population hangs in the balance, so too does the fate of the UK’s entertainment industry, with gigs and live events particularly dwindling. With so much uncertainty, artists have to weigh up the cost of cancelling shows versus putting them on in socially distanced environments. While a seated gig is better than nothing at all, is it financially viable over refunding the original ticket holders? Whichever way you look at it, we’re all losing out. 

So, where does the music industry stand right now? Has anything really changed?

Huge festivals were cancelled throughout the summer and smaller events continue to be scrapped — including a big favourite of mine, Live at Leeds. In recent weeks, some local Leeds venues have been granted financial help and support after lobbying and pleading their cases. This is fantastic news, but how long it’ll last remains to be seen, given the ever-fluctuating state of rules and localised lockdowns, amid a seemingly stalemate situation with this virus. 

As it stands, various gigs that were either scheduled or postponed to December are still on. This, of course, is subject to almost inevitable changes. But some gigs have gone ahead with seating, so you never know.

It would be the dream to see an incredible artist take to the stage again before 2020 is put to bed, but that hope is flickering out. Whatever happens, I know I’m not alone in keeping everything crossed that local bars, clubs and live music venues can throw open their doors properly sooner rather than later. 

Looking back at gigs from last year,
it’s hard not to ask, where does the music industry stand now?
Avalanche Party, Hyde Park Book Club, November 2019

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