After 2020 Slump, Music Industry Tries to Recover in 2021
It is difficult to deny that 2020 was a year of uncertainty, including in the music Industry. The turn of the year is a time to review the plans that were previously abandoned.
It is difficult to deny that 2020 was a year of uncertainty, including in the music industry- which should produce entertainment for the people. The turn of the year is a time to review the plans that were previously abandoned.
2020 was a historic year for rock / metal band Datangai. For the first time in their 18-year career, they went through a year without performing on stage. They did hold online performances like many other musicians and bands for some reason.
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Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, they had to cancel at least 16 stage performances in a number of regions. In fact, previously, Seringai was classified as a band with a busy performance schedule, especially on weekends. They usually hold between 50 and 60 live performances a year (Kompas 6/12/2020).
"There were offers to perform at virtual concerts, especially in July-September. However, we were not comfortable with the virtual concert concept. I personally think these (virtual concerts) go against the nature of Seringai as a metal band that thrives in front of an audience, ”said guitarist Ricky Siahaan in Jakarta on Saturday (2/1/2021).
They are still reluctant to perform in a virtual concert even as the year has changed. Although they do not rule out the possibility that one day they may hold an online performance. However, as of today, no plans have been made to perform at a virtual concert or a live show.
We were not comfortable with the virtual concert concept.
Without performing on stage, the band\'s income has consequently dropped. They still make money from selling merchandise to support the livelihood of the band\'s production crew. The four members of the band respectively have side jobs outside the band.
Instead of thinking about holding live shows, Seringai chose to focus on composing new songs. In the last three months following the relaxation of social restrictions, Ricky, Arian 13 (vocals), Edy Khemod (drums), and Sammy Bramantyo (bass) meet regularly to discuss new songs.
For the first time, they sent each other an audio file containing a rough recording of instrumental music.
"The kids bought equipment so they can record at home. We have never had before. Seringai’s tradition is that when we make songs, we always arrange them in the studio. The basic idea for songs from the personnel was developed together in the studio. So, during the pandemic, we learned a lot, we became a very technological band, ha-ha-ha, "said Ricky.
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During their absence on stage performances, they also made podcasts. The first series containing 20 episodes had been all broadcast in 2020.
The Highoctane Podcast, which contains chats and ha-ha-hi-hi between personnel, is quite good at maintaining the name of the band even though it is not from the music stage. This year, according to the plan, there will be a second series, but the concept is not yet finalized.
Learning a lot
Singer Yura Yunita saw 2020 as a time full of challenges, as well as bringing blessings. She was forced to be more creative. At the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, it was difficult for Yura to get offers to perform.
She then made her own studio at home with makeshift equipment. One of the works that was produced amidst these limitations is a song called "Hoolala". "There are a lot of new lessons that you can do yourself, such as recording at home, learning software, being a technician, being a videographer and editor yourself too. Before, I didn\'t think about it, "said Yura.
For Yura, this limitation has made her to care more about little things she has. "Like how we can be closer to family and partners," said the singer of the song "Duhai Sayang" (Oh My Love).
In the New Year, Yura hopes to realize her pending plans, such as holding a concert in Australia and appearing in a number of live shows in Singapore. She will also release more songs in her third album.
The biggest challenge is to make peace with the new situation and lots of news about the pandemic, causing an excessive worry which in turn disturbs the work process.
Singer Tanayu considered 2020 as a year of reflection. Although it was not easy, she learned to accept when her dream of 2020 had not yet materialized. Her album has not been finished. In addition, a number of stage performances have also been postponed.
"The biggest challenge is to make peace with the new situation and lots of news about the pandemic, causing an excessive worry which in turn disturbs the work process. However, as time goes by, I have learned to adapt to circumstances, ”said Tanayu when contacted in Jakarta on Saturday (26/12/2020).
Tanayu\'s patience at least paid off. She was able to release several singles, including "Meditate", appear at a number of live streaming concerts, and work on a musical theater song.
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"Suddenly the opportunity came in the midst of an uncertain situation and when I almost surrendered to the situation. So, this year, we are reminded to make peace and go hand in hand with time, "she said.
Drawing up a plan
Music promoter Ferry Darmawan of Plainsong Live has difficulty predicting when he will be able to hold another live performance. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Plainsong canceled or postponed three solo performances and one music festival in 2020. In fact, agreements with foreign artists\' agents had been reached and advance payments for several contracts had even been made.
Indeed, the agreement was not canceled because the artist\'s agents understood the bad consequences of the pandemic. Advance payment had also not been forfeited. It\'s just that, when the show will be held is still a mystery to Ferry.
"To be honest, I see a small possibility of having a live concert by the middle of this year, not even at the end of the year, depending on conditions and the impact of vaccination," said Ferry.
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Even though it\'s still unclear, Ferry is still planning to hold the Joyland music festival in December 2021. In fact, Ferry has just paid a down payment for one of the potential performers, whose name he still keeps.
The rise of online music festivals during the pandemic also opens up new possibilities. If the situation allows, he plans to design the festival as a live as well as an online show.
This article was translated by Hendarsyah Tarmizi.