Musicians on the Peninsula are using social media to live stream concerts during the coronavirus.
Good Shot Judy gave its first virtual performance on the band’s Facebook page and Youtube channel last Thursday.
“It was a big change for a band that averages 160 shows a year,” said Jeff Cahoon, who performs double bass and backing vocals for the group.
The jazz band’s last live in-person performance was March 13.
Some band members applied for unemployment and the Cahoon brothers have applied for a small business loan, too.
While a lot of other musicians were immediately live streaming their shows, Jeff Cahoon said his brother, Brett Cahoon, bandleader, vocals and ukulele for the jazz band, was initially hesitant to start live streaming their shows due to the cost of equipment and learning new technology.
But eventually he came around, Jeff Cahoon added.
“We were lucky enough that some of these other bands were able to share tips,” Brett Cahoon said.
Some of group’s main band members were uncomfortable with live streaming the performances together so the band used backup performers instead. The Cahoon brothers said they felt the group already spent so much time together, their risk of exposure was really low.
While the band’s Eventbrite page shows virtual ticketing options, it’s not a requirement and everybody can watch the live shows for free.
“It’s interesting time, I wrote something about this to our fans last week,” Brett Cahoon said, referring his April 17 Facebook post where he pondered about the future of his business during a recession.
“We said things like: “There will always be weddings” and “People like to be entertained when things are bad,” Brett Cahoon wrote. “Music helps them forget about the negativity the world is throwing their way, even if just for a little while.”
“Then, in the second week of March, we went from ‘normal and good’ to thinking a few shows might not have a great turnout; to a couple shows may be postponed; to there are no more shows, weddings, or any gatherings of more than 10 people for the foreseeable future.”
The group moved into their Williamsburg studio space in November and plan to release a live, recorded album on their website this week.
The band’s other plans include recording a Christmas album and once things return to normal, possibly continuing their live shows once a week.
Most of the shows have been canceled through June but the brothers remain hopeful for the upcoming outdoor show in North Carolina the end of May.
“At the very least its been wonderful for our sanity to get together once a week,” Brett Cahoon said about the live streamed shows. “It’s been wonderful that people have been giving so generously.”
Live! from Good Shot Studios shows are Thursday at 7 p.m. on the band’s Facebook page and YouTube channel. You can support the band by buying virtual tickets to their live streamed shows, buy their upcoming album, buy band merchandise or make a donation to the band via PayPal.
Good Shot Judy is not the only performance being live streamed on social media.
Live from Retro Daddio, a new venture created by Sam Eure, founder of Iota Creative Collective, local musician Paul Todd and Retro Daddio, a local gift shop, live streams local talent from local musicians, performers and entertainers each week on Facebook.
Virginia Beer Company is sponsoring the virtual shows. (Story continues after the video)
“I firmly believe that Williamsburg has a wealth of local talent, and that more people need to discover and support these amazing artists,” said Jen Southard, owner of Retro Daddio, in a prepared statement. “Now they can do it from the socially distant comfort of their own homes.”
During the live shows, audience members can chat with each other, make song requests and tip the artists via Venmo, PayPal or other apps, according to the brewery’s news release.
In addition, concert goers can win gift cards to local businesses by tipping the local talent.
Live from Retro Daddio live shows stream Thursday through Sunday each week. For more information or to see the weekly lineup, visit Live from Retro Daddio’s Facebook page.
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