Behind every performing artist is a throng of industry professionals, including tour and production managers, sound engineers, backline technicians, lighting designers, special effects teams, carpenters and more. As follows, the widespread venue closures and concert cancellations due to the spread of coronavirus directly impact the livelihoods of an entire network of people — not just the ones you’d see onstage.
To support live music crews who depend on in-person shows to make a living, the concert promotion company, Live Nation, is putting together a global relief fund called Crew Nation. Live Nation has already contributed a $5 million to Crew Nation, and it pledges to match the next $5 million donated by artists, fans and various music community members on a dollar-for-dollar basis. That’s a $10 million promise.
The relief fund has already generated impressive industry support — Lady Gaga, U2, Billie Eilish, Madonna and Pearl Jam are just a handful of many benefactors.
100% of donations to the Crew Nation fund go to eligible applicants. The 501c3 organization, Music Forward Foundation, will administer the fund and will select recipients based on an objective determination of need, according to its relief rollout webpage. In the next week, Live Nation will contact crew members across the world “whose income has already been affected due to the cancellation or rescheduling of a Live Nation event,” the webpage reads. The concert promotion company will also soon release an application for live music crews across the country and encourage interested parties to continually check its website for next steps.
Live Nation has a formidable presence in Colorado’s own live music economy, as its affiliated venues include the Fillmore Auditorium, the Pepsi Center and Ophelia’s Electric Soapbox. It’s imperative to clarify, therefore, that employees of Live Nation will not be able to receive funding from Crew Nation.