When businesses and governments closed music venues in an effort to reinforce social distancing — a practice that can dramatically slow the spread of COVID-19 — performing artists and other music industry professionals were left to face abrupt and unprecedented economic hardships. As the pause on live music events extends further unto the future, the financial situation of those involved grows all the more perilous. To help musicians meet their basic needs during this time, The Pig & The Sprout restaurant and Color Red record label — two Denver institutions — are teaming up to feed one band or solo artist each day from Tuesday through Friday until the ban on large gatherings is lifted.
Few industries have felt the impact of coronavirus-related precautionary closures as severely as the restaurant business. It’s both heart-wrenching and heartwarming that two of the hardest-hit sectors — dine-in service and live entertainment — are coming together to support each other through the crisis.
This particular partnership was born out of mutual respect and friendship. The Pig & The Sprout owner, Andy Ganick, is a fan and friend of Color Red’s founder, Eddie Roberts. Roberts also set up his own emergency relief fund for musicians through his nonprofit, The Payback.
“We know that the musicians are getting hit even harder than us during this terrible pandemic and we wanted to help them out any way we can,” said Ganick in a press release. “One way to do so would be to hire them to play in the restaurant, but since we can’t do that now, we thought the least we could do is feed them! We will feed one band per day, Tuesday-Friday until they are playing to live audiences again. And we are hoping that, when it is deemed safe, we would welcome them back into action by having 30 bands play at The Pig & The Sprout in 30 days.”
Here’s how the #FeedtheBand initiative works: local musicians who are staying at home within “reasonable driving distance” of The Pig & The Sprout (stationed at 1900 Chestnut Place in Denver’s LoDo neighborhood) can apply to receive a free meal for their band and/or themselves here. Accepted artists will be assigned a date to pick up their dinner. When that day comes, they can pick it up at the restaurant any time between 3:30 and 8:30 p.m. — its current weekday operating hours.
The Pig & The Sprout continues to serve guests via pick-up and delivery options. View their daily menu and hours of operation here.
For artists wishing to apply to #FeedTheBand, click here.