While gigs and festivals are being cancelled left, right, and centre, it’s important now more than ever to get behind and support your fave bands and artists so they can continue producing and playing music when life gets back on track.
At the time of writing, I Lost My Gig has recorded the entertainment industry has lost over $200million, with over 400k people impacted and over 200k gigs and events affected. And it’s not just the small-time bands who have just started out that this is impacting. It’s everyone across the board – from your Tones And I‘s to your local battle of the bands entrants.
That’s a whole bloody lot, so here are a few easy and direct things you can do, as fans, to support your faves.
How To Support Yr Fave Bands During The Era Of Social Distancing
The number one direct way you can put your money where your ears are (?) is by buying music. Yep, remember the days when you used to wander down to the local Sanity and pick up the new album you’ve been itching to hear for ages? Time to do that again, kinda.
Buying music online through Bandcamp gives bands and artists a lot more of a cut in sales than other options, and if you buy from the site from 6pm Friday March 20 to 6pm March 21, 100% of the money will go to the artist.
Buy Some Merch
One of the big payers for bands and artists is the merch they have on sale at shows. Typically bands don’t have to share any cut of sales from the merch desk at gigs, so buying a t-shirt, a stubby holder, anything, is always a great option to directly give cash to your fave bands.
There’s plenty of merch sites out there, and alongside the 100% cut that Bandcamp is doing for music, it’ll be doing that for merch too.
I dunno about you but my t-shirt drawer is just about to explode but I’m sure I can squeeze one or two more in there…
Share Their Music
If you’re a bit tight on money after buying enough groceries to last you a couple of weeks, there are totally ways you can support your fave bands without spending a bunch of cash.
Getting an artist’s name out there means you’re getting their music in front of more eyes and ears. Make social distancing playlists and chuck all your favourite Aussie bands in there. Made playlists of setlists of shows that have been cancelled and share it with all your mates and have an isolation mosh (not sure how that works, but whatever.)
Literally just do anything to get more people around to support your fave bands, hey.
Though it might not give musicians as much cash in their pockets as buying records directly from them, streaming on platforms like Spotify and Apple Music helps. Every little bit helps here, mates! Hell, go full stan and play their music on repeat for days on end to get their numbers up. Rig the system (not sure if I can suggest that but hey, no rules in a pandemic LOL.)
Donate Your Refunds
Cop a refund from a gig you had lined up? Well you had already smooched that money goodbye and out of your account so if you can spare it, donate it back to support your fave bands you were planning on seeing.
Support Act has launched a COVID-19 Relief Fundraiser on its site, and they’re aiming to pool together $20 million (literally a tenth of what’s been lost across the industry.) If you’ve got the ability to, definitely consider chucking your refunded ticket money over to them.
Luke O’Connor from Support Act told PEDESTRIAN.TV that donating if you’re able is a perfect way to directly support your favourite bands in this incredible weird time.
“Even though that money gets returned, we’re encouraging people to take that money and put it back into somewhere like Support Act, or buying merch – whatever they can do,” Luke said.
“And even though they want to honour their cancellations, and even though it might go to a large ticketing agency, the flow-on effects are huge and could be potentially completely decimate a lot of music industry for the foreseeable future.”
Call Your Local Radio Station
Finally, it’s about getting boots on the ground, so to speak. Remember the days when you’d hog the home phone to try and call up and request your favourite songs on the radio? It’s time to get into that habit again, my friends.
Call your local radio station – especially the commercial ones – and request your favourite Aussie bands. Get them onto the airwaves, it’ll help more people hear their music, the station will be supporting Aussie music (also absolutely vital) and it might just get a few people chucking some cash at them for a record or two.
You beaut, you love to see/hear it.Image: Dave Kan