Live music won’t return until 2022, Lollapalooza co-founder says
While concerts, with varying degrees of social distancing, have begun to happen again as coronavirus spreads throughout the world, touring on the scale that we remember it hasn't resumed yet, and it probably won't for quite some time. How long, exactly, until it comes back is a matter that's up for debate: various experts have predicted 2021 in general and fall 2021 specifically, while 64% of epidemiologists say they won't attend a concert for at least another year. Here's another expert prediction, and look out, because this one is considerably less optimistic.
Marc Geiger, who co-founded Lollapalooza and was the global head of the William Morris Endeavor Music Division until earlier this year, appeared on Bob Lefsetz's podcast this week. When Bob asked him when he thought live music would be back, he said, "In my humble opinion, it’s going to be 2022."
"It’s going to take that long before, what I call, the germaphobic economy is slowly killed off and replaced by the claustrophobia economy — that’s when people want to get out and go out to dinner and have their lives, go to festivals and shows," Geiger continued.
He went on, saying, "It’s my instinct, that’s going to take a while because super-spreader events — sports, shows, festivals, etc. — aren’t going to do too well when the virus is this present."
Geiger added that there are "probably 20" roadblocks standing in the way of live music at present. "The virus and illness being one, spacing and density” being another," he said, and as a third, insurance and liability. "With [COVID], there’s an infinite liability," he said.
"The next six months may be more painful than the last six months, and maybe the next six months after that are even more so," he pointed out.
If Geiger is right, he predicts a "massive amount of bloodshed, bankruptcies, and won’t be good for the majority of the industry."
"The whole thing is a shit show," he said.
Listen to the full podcast episode via lefsetz.com.
A survey of independent venues found that 90% of them will be forced to shut down without government aid. Visit saveourstages.com to contact your legislates about passing legislation to make sure venues are still around to host shows once the pandemic passes.