Written by Zach Fulcher
It’s been a weird year for entertainment. Coronavirus hit us pretty hard and left a lot of artists wondering what they should do when dropping new music in the pandemic. Standard outlets like concerts and music festivals have been out of the picture, but hasn’t stopped new artists like Jack Harlow, Roddy Ricch, Pop Smoke (RIP), and King Von (RIP) from skyrocketing to popularity. What this means for the future of music is that we will continue to see artists emerge mostly from streaming platforms and social media, since digital is the primary source of music consumption.
Many celebrities have taken to Instagram Live because they are bored just like us. They have used the platform to talk about the proper precautions against COVID-19. There has also been a surge in live stream performances by artists on Instagram Live, Twitch, and even Zoom. In November, Gucci Mane and Jeezy battled on VERZUZ and drew 1.8 million people. Drake and Torey Lanez also broke records with “Quarantine Radio'' back in March.
Since it might be awhile before we see a return to in-person concerts, live concerts on platforms like Instagram Live might be the new norm we have to accept. Experts are unsure if concerts will ever be able to return to what they once were and even if they do return, it is very unlikely we see a return to large crowds in the next couple of years. That totally depends on how we will continue to handle it as a nation and what happens with the rollout of the vaccine.
During quarantine, many people have tried to find ways to ease their boredom, i.e spending countless hours on apps such as TikTok, Spotify, Apple Music, and Netflix. TikTok has become wildly popular over the last two years and especially during the pandemic. TikTok allows users to make videos with an open music library, and a lot of the popular tracks this year have garnered massive streams on all the major DSPs. For example, a TikTok user named 420doggface208, had a massively popular TikTok of him riding on his skateboard, drinking cranberry juice, with Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams” playing. The TikTok video helped catapult the single back into the charts, and Fleetwood Mac experienced it’s best week ever on streaming platforms. This year, TikTok revealed its users in the United States have gone from 11 million in 2018, to 100 million in June 2020. It is more important than ever to create a TikTok to make your brand more popular.
The case is the same for movie theaters as well. Streaming platforms like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video have had the upper hand for a while over companies like AMC, but the excitement of going out to see a new movie in a crowded theater with friends is still there. Now, theaters are closed or in limited capacity and it seems that the fates are sealed. Warner Bros. has already announced that it will release its 2021 movies in theaters and on the HBO Max streaming service. For now, all people can do is upgrade their televisions at home and buy more streaming services, this may be the ultimate future even if things start to go back to normal.
What do you think? Comment below if you prefer the digital age of entertainment over being in-person.