by India McCarty

For music lovers, one of the worst things about COVID-19 is the indefinite hiatus on live music. Concerts are being cancelled and postponed until next year, and fans are understandably disappointed that their plans to see their favorite artists have changed. However, for some people, this concert drought is more than just a bummer.

Touring crews and venue workers are out of a job for the foreseeable future. Even when we do start going to concerts again, no one knows how the industry will change to accommodate the pandemic.

Many artists are conscious of this situation and are doing their best to support their crews. Artists like Bleachers, Little Mix and Run the Jewels have released merch items where the profits will go towards their touring crew. Some people have started crowdfunding campaigns, either to support themselves or their friends. Frank Fanelli, singer in the band The World We Knew and a tour manager himself, has managed to raise over $70,000.

Larger companies are also helping out. Earlier this year, Live Nation launched a $10 million “Crew Nation” fund that will help out touring and venue crews. The Music Forward Foundation, a nonprofit organization, is also supporting out-of-work tour and production managers, riggers, sound engineers, back-line techs, lighting directors and designers, special effects experts, carpenters and more.

In a statement about Crew Nation, Live Nation said, “Crew members are the backbone of the live music industry, and we hope you’ll join us in supporting them through this temporary intermission until we can once again unite millions around the world through the power of live music.”

Most experts say that we can expect to return to concerts in 2021. We can’t wait!

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