After a year in lockdown, live music is beginning to show signs of life. Venues across the country are reopening but many questions remain. Are music fans just as excited to go back to live shows as venues and artists are?
Two weeks ago, famed NOLA Jazz venue, Tipitina’s reopened to the public with two sold-out shows from jazz pianist, Ivan Neville. This was the first time in a year that the club was open to the public, although capacity for the club was capped at 75 guests. The evening before, Co-owner of Tipitina’s, Stanton Moore and his jazz trio played a live streamed show with limited invited guests in attendance as a trial run for the following nights.
Ticket buyers were met with temperature checks before entering the club and reserved seating once inside. Masks were mandatory, walk-up bar service was replaced with table service and dancing was strictly prohibited.
But to those in attendance, the inconveniences didn’t matter much.
Like many businesses during the pandemic, Tipitina’s took the opportunity to upgrade and renovate their space as well as to grow their presence on social media with live streams. “Tipitina’s TV” and “The Alright, Alright Broadcast” are popular shows on the Tipitina’s YouTube channel where local musicians and other people connected to the industry are featured.
A year in the pandemic has left many venues struggling to pay their employees, rent and many more expenses. Albeit with many health and safety precautions taken, reopening like this will be a much needed boost for these businesses as well as for music fans themselves.