It's been just over a month since music venues across the country began closing their doors, and cancelling and postponing shows, in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Festivals have been cancelling and postponing their 2020 editions en masse too -- while Okeechobee happened in the beginning of March, SXSW, which would've been a week later, was cancelled, and this past weekend would've been the first weekend of Coachella 2020 had it not been postponed to October.
Many bands and festivals seem to be pinning their hopes on this fall, if not late summer, as the time when it'll be safe to congregate and hold big events again, and while we hope it's true (we definitely miss live music), it's hard to say how realistic that timeframe actually is. New York Times Magazine ran a piece this weekend where they talked to experts in various fields about when they think American's economy can reasonably be restarted, and what they had to say will be disappointing to anyone hoping to attend an event rescheduled for fall 2020. Zeke Emanuel, oncologist, bioethicist, senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, and vice provost for global initiatives and director of the Healthcare Transformation Institute at the University of Pennsylvania, said this to The New York Times:
Restarting the economy has to be done in stages, and it does have to start with more physical distancing at a work site that allows people who are at lower risk to come back. Certain kinds of construction, or manufacturing or offices, in which you can maintain six-foot distances are more reasonable to start sooner. Larger gatherings — conferences, concerts, sporting events — when people say they’re going to reschedule this conference or graduation event for October 2020, I have no idea how they think that’s a plausible possibility. I think those things will be the last to return. Realistically we’re talking fall 2021 at the earliest.
In the mean time, if you're in a financial situation to do so, you can support bands by buying their albums and merch directly, and support NYC venues while they remain closed, as well. We've been posting amazing live videos to watch while concerts are cancelled every weekday, and maintaining a list of livestreams to watch every single day.