In Corona Corner, we are asking musicians how the outbreak has effected them, how did they adapt to the situation, what did they learn. You think L.A. is all about the glam? You are so wrong! Read the interview with Josh Kay, Alizarin’s guitarist and vocalist, and let him opens a new L.A. dimension for you.
Hi! How are you doing during corona outbreak?
Thanks for having us! The band is doing mostly well during this pandemic, considering the circumstances. We’ve lost some income from our day jobs but we’re alive and well, so we can’t complain too much.
What have you cancelled/postponed due coronavirus?
The main thing we’ve had to postpone is an album release show for our upcoming record “The Last Semblance”. The album is due July 10th and it appears that live events won’t be happening in the near future. But we’ve been very productive in most other ways.
How the global coronavirus pandemic is directly impacting bands?
I think it depends on how established different bands are. We live in a time where artists can be successful in almost infinite ways. Some smaller bands only promote online and don’t play many gigs, if any. Those artists may not be as impacted as larger artists who rely on touring. Those more established groups are losing income from canceled ticket sales but also heavily from lack of merch sales. However, on a more positive note, many artists are focusing more on digital promotion and coming up with creative ways to get their work out to the public online.
How are you keeping your fans during this chaotic period?
We’re taking full advantage of social media and streaming outlets right now. We’ve been really trying to pump up the new album and have released a couple of singles from it. We’ll be releasing a lyric video for the third single very soon and potentially conducting some live streaming soon as well. I think much of it is just engaging with our audience and most people are spending much of their time online, particularly while under quarantine.
What will metal look like when we re-emerge from isolation?
Well, musically speaking, I don’t think anything will really change. People are writing music more than ever and the technology available makes recording from home extremely viable. What is changing is how we all promote it and interact with the public. Bands are getting creative and the most up-to-date ones are really on the cutting edge of the digital market.
Who will suffer the most after all: musicians, organizers promoters…
I think the fans suffer the most in many regards, because they aren’t able to receive the live show experience. Internet streaming is an interesting substitute but it will never replace the feeling of a raw, in-person performance. The bigger touring musicians will certainly suffer a loss of income, especially if that is how they make a living. Organizers, venues, and promoters are also losing massive income and I imagine many smaller ones might not resurface after this is all said and done. Perhaps this will lead to more constructive reorganization of events and a different balance in terms of how the artists and promoters make money.
What is your isolation soundtrack?
Definitely a lot of Porcupine Tree, with some of that applicable social commentary, and lately a lot of Enslaved, Portishead, and a few film/TV soundtracks. But personally, I like to listen to my favorite music regardless of the circumstances around me. The main difference is I have more time to indulge in these good tunes.
Besides gigs, what/whom do you miss the most?
I’m a bit of a loner already, so a lot of my social life hasn’t changed much. But I do teach guitar and giving online video lessons isn’t quite the same as engaging with students in person. So I do miss that interaction. Like many people, plans have had to be canceled, including some family events, and various other gatherings. There is something about knowing that you can’t quite see people or go out and do things, even if you don’t often normally, that adds to the anxiety.
Do you have any rehearsals during quarantine? If yes, how do they look like?
We haven’t been rehearsing, partly because we’ve been immersed in finishing the new album and we have no live gigs for now. Also, one of our band members temporarily relocated across the country due to the outbreak. But because we recorded all of our parts before the pandemic really hit the States, we’ve been able to complete the album with little interruption.