Fake cheering might be OK for the footy, but it is a very different thing to ask a musician to play in front of empty seats.
But it’s finally time to tap the kegs and turn down the lights because live music is back in the ACT!
“The community support has been so fantastic,” said Lance Fox, the owner of Belconnen pub and live music landmark The Basement.
“I had an emotional moment during the recent Glitoris show, going ‘this is what we trained for, this is it’, just seeing all these people back going ‘I cannot believe I am in a room seeing a live band!’”
Music, live events and the arts were some of the hardest-hit industries from COVID-19, but through hell and high water, musicians are determined to find their feet again.
“We do not do this as a musician because we think we are going to make money, you do it because you love it and that feeling of being on stage and the audience having no option but to listen to your awful music!” Lance laughed, repeating how keen he was to take the stage with his metalcore band next week.
“What is the tenacity of musicians? They have been doing this for a long time and they still end up being the guy who puts $4,000 worth of equipment into a $400 car and drives 400 km.
“I would do it for free.”
It was the same passion for music and performing that carried local artist Lucy Sugerman through the pandemic.
“It has been very hard without gigs, and most of my friends are musicians so it has been really hard seeing everyone struggle through the uncertainty of it all,” she said.
“There has been a lot of time to think and a lot of time to write lyrics, just a lot of time to re-evaluate really.”
Lucy will be taking to the stage for the first time since March tonight, but live crowds will have to wait a little longer to hear her ethereal vocals. Tonight she will instead echo through loungerooms as she joins the line up for Live In Ya Lounge.
But for Lucy, it’s an exciting start after a four-month step back from the live music scene.
“It is going to be weird finishing a song and one guy clapping there even though there will be a few hundred people watching,” she joked, “but it will be really nice having the full production set up, I am really excited about that!”
During the break, the talented vocalist and multi-instrumentalist has been teaching herself music production online and has written a spate of new songs that will be on tonight’s setlist.
Influenced by another Canberra vocalist and multi-instrumentalist LIV LI, Lucy has spent the last few months behind the mic collaborating with other local artists to compile an impressive array of new songs and sounds that are set to be released in the near future.
But until then the resurgence of the live music in Canberra is set to do what it does best, and let locals help locals in a scene built heavily on community support and resilience.
“People will be getting out and want to see things and support musicians,” Lucy said.
“Everyone has turned to music and art and TV shows, and musicians banded together for the fires so hopefully people will get out and go and watch live music!”
You can catch Lucy tonight from 7:30 pm at Live In Ya Lounge.
But if you are in the mood to head out and catch a live act, check out The Basement where LIVE, LOCAL & LOUD! will host local Canberra talent including Renegade Peacock, Escape Syndrome, Slagatha Christie, Hence the Testbed and the Beta Blockers tonight. Tickets from Oztix.