COVID-19 and the Live Music Industry


Whilst we are getting ready to safely re-open our music shops, it will be a long time until the live music industry returns. There has been much reported in the press about the new future of live music, and here we bring you an update on the sector…

Music Venue Trust

The MIA has been championing and supporting the Music Venue Trust since its’ inception. Music Venue Trust is a registered charity, created to protect, secure and improve the UK live music network by securing the long-term future of iconic grassroots music venues such as Hull Adelphi, Exeter Cavern, Southampton Joiners, The 100 Club, Band on the Wall, Tunbridge Wells Forum etc.

Music Venue Trust has just announced that the #saveourvenues campaign launched three weeks ago has now resulted in 140 grassroots music venues being removed from its ‘critical’ list. #saveourvenues, which has so far raised over £1.5m in donations, was initiated by MVT in response to the continued economic threat to over 500 grassroots music venues throughout the UK.

The UK Live Music Group

The UK Live Music Group sits within the trade body UK Music. It’s a collective voice of promoters, festivals, agents, venues and production services. They are calling for, among other measures, clarity on when live events will be allowed to return, as well as any social-distancing protocols that will need to remain place when they do.

They have put out a statement which says that thousands of jobs will be lost and the British music business – which formerly contributed £5.2bn a year to the UK economy – will suffer £900 million (€1bn) in losses from the impact of coronavirus without urgent state support.

As a result of the coronavirus outbreak, three quarters of the industry’s workforce is furloughed, with little certainty about when their jobs might return.

Virtual Reality Concerts

Back in 2017, we published the article How virtual reality could revolutionise performance arts. In COVID-19 lockdown, we’ve seen many artists broadcast performances from home. There’s even been examples of Virtual Reality Concerts.

A virtual reality concert in Helsinki has attracted over one million spectators. That’s 12% of Finland’s population tuning in. Almost 150,000 viewers even went so far as to create virtual avatars for themselves. You can read more on this here –

There aren’t any official lists of virtual concert attendance numbers, but this figure is likely one of the highest on record. If nothing else, it clearly demonstrates how public demand for virtual reality experiences is growing, and may likely remain even after the coronavirus pandemic ends. Could this be the future of live music?

Finally, we’ll leave you with a passionate article written by Dave Grohl, the longest-serving drummer for the rock band Nirvana and the founder of Foo Fighters. This article really reinforces the importance of live music. Dave Grohl: The irreplaceable thrill of live music