WA’s music industry has been decimated by COVID-19. Live music venues have shut down and gigs cancelled, leaving artists without a stage.
Popular instrument retailer, Mega Music has responded by launching the WA Lost Gig Fund, an in-store livestreaming and crowd-funding initiative aimed at raising funds to support vulnerable, out-of-work musicians.
Tony Edwards, marketing manager of Mega Music, explains: “This was a response to the fact that we saw so many of our customers suddenly lose their income almost overnight. We know that not everybody has the equipment or technical knowledge to suddenly start streaming shows to their fanbase so we thought that putting the stage instore and providing the technical facility would enable local artists to stay in touch with their audience and also give them a platform to promote their merchandise, streams or physical CDs/LPs. With so much of their live income being affected this is another way they may be able to support themselves during this difficult time.”
Artists are paid an appearance fee from the WA Lost Gigs Fund, so they see an immediate return on their time and involvement.
“Community and industry involvement are critical to success and the project is overseen by a panel of local industry professionals including Bob Gordon and Kylie Thompson from Sorrento Strategic Music,” Tony explains.
They have received overwhelming support from the community, who have pledged support for local artists through purchasing merchandise, streaming their songs and creating local music playlists featuring Perth bands.
“The financial implications are worrying but just as importantly, we need to be aware of the mental strain that could put on people. During this time, we need to be very aware of our fellow musicians and keep in touch remotely to make sure they’re doing ok,” Tony expressed.
“We’re a strong community and will get through this but right now, our local music scene needs as much support as we can give.”
You can catch Mega Music’s in-store livestreamed concerts on their Facebook page.
See more on The Lost Gig Fund here.