Music is an integral part of life, without it the world would be a mere echo of sadness which stands upon the shoulders of those who remember the sweet melodies that once calmed their souls, without the musicians who make the music we lose something as important as life itself, how many times has a song lifted your spirits, made you cry or feel something, anything at all?
There is a very famous song by Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush called "Don't Give Up", its one of the few songs which always brings a lump to my throat and in the current climate of uncertainty it is a song that everyone should hear.
None more so than musicians and those in the music industry, I know that your whole livelihood has been ripped from your hands, there is no income from live performance, the meager amount you may make from live streaming often doesn't even put food on your table and the sale of merchandise has probably dwindled.
Over the last few weeks of August 2020 I have seen too many musicians wanting to quit or feeling as though there is no point, so much talent is going to go waste if this happens and all because a "virus" is apparently sweeping the world, yet almost all other careers and industries are being allowed back into a work environment.
Yes there may be the "Socially distanced gig" but for many musicians the love they have for music goes beyond just playing, it is seeing the joy on the faces of their audiences, hearing the songs being sung along with or back to them, the atmosphere of hundreds or thousands of people dancing to the music and feeling alive.
The socially distanced gig dictates small groups may stand in a cattle pen, no singing or dancing is allowed, it sounds almost like the plot of the Kevin Bacon movie Footloose, but this is the reality we are facing while 100's of protestors gather in close proximity and yet very few, if any, cases of the virus have made an appearance.
How they expect photographers to work in this environment is beyond me, as someone who once took thousands of photographs at gigs and concerts I can testify that to get the shots I wanted I had to get in close proximity to the stage or the audience, often dodging other photographers doing the same.
To the musicians I say please don't give up, there will come a time once more when you will be able to grace the stage and feel the heat of the lighting rig, hear the roar of the crowd calling your name, and even if you aren't a famous musician playing to thousands, your fans no matter how few are waiting to see and hear you in person once more.
Give the musicians back their lives so that they in turn can give us back the experience of live music, without the ability to play to an audience these musicians cannot afford to write and record new songs, they cannot give their love and talent to the world in the way it should be.
Live performance not only gives us all an amazing experience that often stays with us a lifetime, it gives the musicians and performers a chance to make sales on merchandise as well as being paid (when they are paid) for playing.
If you are a musician please take notice of this article, the next time you feel like selling your guitar, packing your microphone away or taking down your home studio, stop and think what you are denying the world, there will come a time when music will be heard in the bars and stadiums again and you need to be there and ready for when it comes.
I truly hope it doesn't come to a point where live music is gone forever, and hopefully we can bring the experience of live music with the full atmosphere of a concert back, perhaps there may be something good that will come out of this, live music is being missed by a lot of people and it truly is much more important to out lives and well being than many realize.
If we lose the talents of these musicians who have had enough, we lose a beauty that belongs to the whole world, and when the streets are silent, only the cries of those with the memory of live music will be heard like whispers upon the wind and only then will the world realize what they have lost.