Earlier this month, we shared a piece on how COVID-19 is impacting the music industry. At this point, the coronavirus is impacting nearly every industry. However, the folks in the music industry and those who appreciate it are choosing to band together in support of one another.
Here’s what’s happening:
The Recording Academy®, MusiCares® and #MusicMatters
The Recording Academy® and its affiliated charitable foundation, MusiCares®, have teamed up to form the COVID-19 Relief Fund in order to keep the music industry flourishing through the pandemic.
Music industry supporters can make a donation to the relief fund, while artists who have been directly impacted by the coronavirus can apply for funding.
Those music industry workers who apply for funding are eligible to receive up to $1,000 in grant funding in order to help compensate for lost gigs and other hardships due to COVID-19.
Top music industry organizations including Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group, StubHub, SiriusXM, Pandora and more have donated directly to the MusiCares® fund, bringing the fund’s total to more than $4 million.
Additionally, Texas-based firm, Encore Live, announced its philanthropic initiative, #MusicMatters, a live auction that will donate all proceeds to MusiCare®’s COVID-19 Relief Fund.
The #MusicMatters initiative includes auction items and VIP, once-in-a-lifetime experiences. Current items and experiences up for grabs include:
- Miranda Lambert signed guitar
- Spend a day with Randy Travis in Texas
- Meet ZZ Top with two tickets to a show and more!
Interested supporters can also donate directly to the #MusicMatters virtual tip jar, which will go directly to the #MusiCares® COVID-19 relief fund.
The streaming giant has set up the COVID-19 Music Relief Project, recommending reputable organizations providing financial relief to those within the music industry. Such partners include MusiCares®, PRS Foundation, Help Musicians and more.
Spotify has vowed to match donations up to $10 million across the aforementioned platforms.
Additionally, Spotify is developing an in-app feature that will allow artists to raise funds directly from fans. From their Spotify artist profile page, artists will be able to direct fans to an initiative of their choice, or a funding program for themselves.
Motown Accelerator’s Emergency Response Program
Together with Backline MKE and gener8tor, the Motown Accelerator announced its virtual, two-week program for artists impacted by COVID-19.
The program will run Monday, April 6 through Friday, April 17, and includes daily webinars led by music industry professionals, as well as one-on-one office hours.
For more information and to enroll, visit backlinemusic.com.
Newport Festivals Musician Relief Fund
Created to help those musicians in the folk and jazz community, the Newport Festivals Musician Relief Fund provides microgrants (a one-time grant of $300 or less) and full grants (a one-time grant of $300 or more).
While the focus is on those who have previously played the Newport Jazz or Folk Festivals, as well as local musicians within the Rhode Island community, other applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
Interested musicians may apply here.
Sweet Relief Fund
The Sweet Relief Musicians Fund was established in the early 1990s to provide financial assistance to those within the music industry facing illness, disability or age-related problems.
In the wake of COVID-19, the non-profit organization has created a fund for music industry workers and musicians who have been directly impacted by the coronavirus. Those funds may be used for vital living expenses or medical expenses.
Full requirements and an online application can be found here.
How can we help the music industry?
As music lovers, we want to do whatever we can to help musicians and those within the music industry who have been directly impacted by COVID-19.
But what exactly can fans do to help?
For starters, continue streaming!
BuzzAngle reports that between the week of March 13 to March 19, U.S. music streams dropped approximately 7.6 percent. However, on-demand video streams (i.e. YouTube) rose that same week.
So, while you’re likely glued to the radio or your local news channel staying abreast of current events, don’t forget to take a music break—for your own sake, and that of your favorite musicians.
A growing trend while social distancing, musicians are livestreaming concerts to keep fans entertained—while also accepting donations to keep themselves afloat during trying times. Tune in, and if you’re able, donate!
As always, you can continue to support your favorite musicians within the FanLabel app by making your contest picks and sharing with your social networks.
Just as music unites us, so does this pandemic, unfortunately. We will all get through this together.