It’s Friday night. You bought tickets for you and your partner to see Run the Jewels. You enter the outdoor concert venue, packed to the brim with music lovers. When lead singer, Big Mike comes on stage, everyone cheers. Each person belts out the words to “Close Your Eyes (and Count to F*ck)”, and you feel a sense of community. Unity. Togetherness.
Gone are the days of attending a packed concert venue. Due to the pandemic shutting down small and large venues beginning in March, crowds and in-person music performances are on hold. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy live music. Virtual concerts have become increasingly popular this year. In fact, users on Eventbrite have searched for online events in some capacity with an increasing rate of nine times more than before.
A little about virtual concerts
In the past, many artists and bands would hold virtual concerts for free, as a bonus to the in-person concerts. Some would even post videos on Instagram, Facebook, or YouTube of more laid-back performances, acoustic or stripped way down. Pre-pandemic, anyone could join in on these events without cost and experience the music from one’s favorite artists from the comfort of one’s own home. However, now with virtual events being the only option available these days, many artists have to charge a fee for tickets to generate some revenue, even if the venue is still a messy living room or studio.
For those who are on a tight budget-artists are still holding free online events though. Good sites to look for virtual concerts include Songkick, Jambase, and Veeps. Many artists are posting videos of their music on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube. Several are taking advantage of Instagram Live and Twitch to connect with fans and other artists. Earlier in the pandemic, pop music and contemporary R&B singer Charlie Puth went live on Instagram with Benny Blanco, a pop and hip-hop music singer and music producer, where the pair created a collab together on the spot. Since neither of them posted the Live on their profiles afterwards, here’s an Instagram Live Charlie Puth did on March 18 with live music and some fun facts about music.
Some artists have even been offering Zoom events with fans, the new ‘Meet and Greet.’ Glass Animals, an English psychedelic pop band who released several singles this past year, held a Zoom recently with fans. The group announced the event fifteen minutes before it happened and put the link in its Instagram story. This event provided an intimate opportunity for fans to connect with the band without being at an in-person event.
Why virtual concerts are fun
The environment of a virtual concert obviously won’t be the same as an in-person concert. But that doesn’t necessarily have to be a bad thing. Virtual concerts could be the perfect date night, with a good combination of bonding over music and intimacy. Sofi Tukker have amassed a dedicated fandom over their consistent livestreams. These rabid fans tune in each day to watch Sophie and Tucker and have developed incredible connections with each other and the band and wear a product badge of honor: Freak Fam. Embracing this sort of location be damned, come-as-you-woke-up environment, could be a good way to bond with a few friends to watch live music from your favorite artist. Virtual music events help limit your exposure to other people while still being able to enjoy your favorite music live. You can even order in from countless food delivery options, but according to this article about how music impacts how you eat, if you pump the bass on your sound bar too loud, you may over-order. (We say do it anyway and work it off dancing).
Aside from a date night, these virtual events allow for people to have a more meaningful experience. Having your favorite artist performing the songs you know and love right in your living room just doesn’t get any better. The culture for enjoying live music is changing, and with access to technology, these alternatives are great to provide more intimacy. It’s all the things we loved so much about AOL Instant Messenger and Chat rooms, but with good music and video.
For your next date night, find a potential match in the Vinylly app, and schedule a virtual concert to attend together, right there in the chat.