Musicians playto online crowds

Musicians playto online crowds

Concerts across the world are cancelled because of the pandemic but musicians are making sure the show goes on

Ankur Tewari, who has been holding Instagram concerts regularly, says music can help people cope with anxiety during such situations.


John Legend’s concert featured
his wife Chrissy Tiegen and daughter
Luna. He played a song from Beauty
and the Beast, on Luna’s request.

Concerts and music festivals around the world have been cancelled or postponed due to Covid-19. But a new stage emerged around a week ago — the balconies of a country on lockdown.

Videos of Italians singing from their balconies, DJs playing sets and even an opera singer belting out tunes for his neighbours have proved how music can lift spirits even in the most uncertain times. With social distancing and quarantines becoming the norm, artistes have turned to Instagram to keep the music alive.

From Chris Martin of Coldplay to Ankur Tewari, musicians are putting on mini-concerts from their homes to encourage people to practice social distancing.

Chris Martin, John Legend and Charlie Puth sang for their fans in a collaboration with the World Health Organisation and Global Citizen. The initiative, called #TogetherAtHome, hopes to get more musicians to participate in such concerts to encourage people to stay at home.


Singer Miley Cyrus has collaborated
with fellow celebrities such as Demi
Lovato, on a quarantine time chat
show called Bright Minded.

Both Martin and Legend interacted with their followers and took requests for songs. Legend’s Live on Wednesday saw appearances

from his wife Chrissy Tiegen and daughter Luna. He had tagged artistes Miguel and Charlie Puth to carry on the initiative. Puth took up the challenge and further announced that former ‘One Direction’ member Niall Horan and rapper Common would be putting up concerts as well.  Closer to home, the man behind the Gully Boy soundtrack, Ankur Tewari, has been singing for the “socially distanced”.

“All our concerts were cancelled and no one is going out due to the situation. While this is for the best, a sense of anxiety and feeling of FOMO (fear of missing out) is bound to happen,” he says. He decided to put on concerts on Instagram live to reach out to people to ease feelings of despair, especially for those who are living on their own.

“The aim is to increase social media interaction while we are distancing ourselves socially,” he explains.

He puts up these concerts every other day. “It also helps me focus my energy on something,” he says. 

The concerts go on from anywhere between 30 minutes to over an hour. Ankur says that he doesn’t go into it with a set time, “I go with the flow and the vibe of the audience. The first concert was more one-to-one. The second one had people interacting with each other in the comments and it was much like playing in a Mumbai bar. It’s quite heartening to see people checking up on each other, it helps keep the momentum going,” he says. 

When asked about how different it is from a physical concert he quips that there are no selfies after the show. “Although I’m fond of the physical interaction in a concert, for now this will do,” he concludes. 

Tune in...

Death Cab For Cutie’s lead singer Ben Gibbard has been playing daily quarantine concerts. 

Singer Erykah Badu will also hold a ‘quarantine concert series’ live from her bedroom this weekend.

Classical music and opera shows are also set to be streamed for virtual audiences.

Singer Miley Cyrus started a talk show on Instagram called Bright Minded where she collaborated with other personalities. So far there has been a psychiatrist, fellow Disney star and singer Demi Lovato, comedian Amy Schumer and designer Jeremy Scott on the show.

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