Wednesday, May 6, 2020

5 Predictions About the Future of Live Music and 1 Thing You Can Do to Help Your Favorite Local Venue Survive

Photo from The Magic Bag's Facebook Page
Over the last eight years, Hip in Detroit has had the honor of covering all the fun things happening around Detroit. We talk about art, food, and culture, but music has always been the backbone of this website. We grew up going to shows all over Metro Detroit and live music is what inspired us to start this website in the first place. This is why we have worked really hard to form relationships with all the venues and booking agents around town and it's why we go out of our way to set up ticket giveaways for all the events that come through town. We want our readers to experience the magic that is live music. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 all live music and events have been put on an indefinite hiatus. No one knows when we will be able to safely reopen or what the landscape of the Detroit music scene will look like when we come out on the other side of COVID-19. But, we know one thing for sure, if the government doesn't step up and include live events in some of their recovery plans, many of the places we love may never reopen at all. So, after talking to some of the major players around town, we have 5 predictions for you on what the future of live music might look like, and one way you can help your favorite venue ensure that they can reopen whenever this is over.

1. Local shows will come back first.
Cross country tours take a long time to plan out and execute so it will take a while before you see anyone new rolling through town. At the same time, people will also be anxious to see a show. So, a lot of venues will turn to local talent to take the stage when things open back up. We think that we might finally see the resurgence of the "you had to be there" local show and we cannot wait for it.

2. Some booking agents think that we might see the bigger artists playing smaller venues for awhile.
A few of the people we talked to said that we may see some huge stars taking small stages after this ends. Touring bands and live music will need some heavy hitters to get out there and remind people how great it is to see a band and they will most likely do that on smaller stages than before the pandemic. This means that some legendary artists might lose money to give people the experience of a lifetime. Can you imagine seeing something that would normally play Little Caesars or DTE take the stage at St. Andrew's? We are here for that prediction!

3. There probably won't be any festivals this year.
A lot of festivals have already canceled and a few have postponed, but a lot of the people that we talked to think that most if not all festivals will have to cancel or postpone. Festivals have to be planned out really far in advance and right now no one can plan anything out in the way that they would need to bring a multi-day festival to the stage. So, if you still have tickets to something, we do not want you to lose hope, we just want you to hold off on that plane ticket or hotel room because the reality is it just might not happen this year.

4. Venues will cut their capacity, probably by half.
No one knows how long we are going to have to keep space between all of us, but a lot of the venues are assuming that they will have to keep things more moveable when they open back up. So you might see a 1,000 person room turn into a 500 person room overnight.

5. Nothing can replace the feeling you get when you watch music performed live.
Everyone is live streaming and some people think that it can replace the experience you get when you go to a live show, but everyone I talked to agreed that streaming will never replace the feeling that you get when you watch music performed live in front of your eyes. When you watch an artist or band perform in person you can literally feel the music inside of you. You can also feel the energy from the crowd and if you let yourself give in to it you can forget about the outside world for an hour or two. Streaming is cool and it's a great way to get us through this pandemic, but it will not replace the experience of going to a live show.

800 venues across the U.S have come together to remind everyone how important live music is. They say that the current COVID-19 recovery plans do not work for their industry and they are hoping that if they make some noise we can change that. So, if you want to change that here is what you can do.

Visit this website, put in your zip code, and copy and paste this letter to send to your local state representatives. It's simple but it will make a big difference.

To learn more about NIVA the new organization that is coming together to save live music click here.

Here is the list of Michigan venues that have joined NIVA:

20 Front Street - Lake Orion
Audiotree Presents - Detroit
El Club - Detroit
Aretha Franklin Amphitheatre - Detroit
Flint Local 432  - Flint
Fusion Shows - Lansing
Grove Studios - Ypsilanti
Kalamazoo State Theatre - Kalamazoo
Mac’s Bar - Lansing
Magic Bag - Ferndale
Meridian Entertainment Inc - Lansing
Midland Center for the Arts - Midland
Overdrive -  Lansing
Seven Steps Up Live Music & Events -  Spring Lake
The Crofoot Presents - Detroit
The Crofoot Presents - Pontiac
The Intersection - Grand Rapids
The Machine Shop Concert Lounge -  Flint
The Pyramid Scheme - Grand Rapids
The Sanctuary - Detroit
Wealthy Theatre - Grand Rapids
Ziggy's - Ypsilanti


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