. : : July 18th, 2020 : : .
2020 was … unusual.
Gripped by a worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, relegated to stay-at-home orders and curfews, live concerts stopped being a thing. At least, in the typical sense of the phrase.
Pivoting to engage fanbases, generate income, and continue to spark creative drive, musicians began to take up live-streaming performances en masse. Like many live performances, the quality varied.
Usually, things like the venue, PA system, and sound person on duty were deciding factors on sound and visuals, but now it was the artists’ home studio set-up, internet upload speed, and network congestion. And to say it’s been a learning curve for everyone would be putting it somewhat mildly. However, as the year wore on, the quality by and large improved.
The new challenge arising as 2020 came to a close was not how much will I enjoy this live stream, and turned more toward how many live streams can I enjoy?
Your favourite artists, many of which would only play locally once every few years, were now performing regularly online. Your local groups were not only competing with whatever international artist was playing at the local mega arena — but with ALL the international artists world-wide performing that evening.
It wasn’t unusual to see several interesting performers having sets on the same evening; even if they were fortunately staggered over the course of the night and you were lucky enough that they used the same platforms to broadcast, it became overwhelming. Exhausting, even.
Not to mention, removing the atmosphere of a live performance from the equation definitely dampens the experience.
Who could blame the artist? They were struggling for paychecks, if not the all-important clicks and impressions. The writing was on the wall: to adapt was to survive.
But as consumers of live music, we’ve had to make larger choices we’re not always custom to making. Do I see the free live stream of band A, or pay to see the live stream of band B, donate to band C, join band D’s Patreon, purchase from band E’s BandCamp Fridays, etc.
To exasperate these difficulties, these streamed live performances are now competing more directly with other streaming platforms — most notably Netflix and Disney+, the former of which had a series of peculiar shows that, if everyone wasn’t locked in-doors, probably would’ve been little more blips on the cultural radar but became world-wide phenomena, the latter of which pivoted a handful of would-be high-profile theatrical movie releases to its service.
All that’s to say: I’ve captured the audio of a few of these live performances — not nearly as many as I could have, and probably not as many as I should have, and arguably not even the right ones in the first place. But I’ll be updating the blog with a few of these recordings, and where else to start but short and sweet?
Hannah Georgas was one of thousands of artists with an album release strategy in 2020 that was turned topsy-turvy with the pandemic. She was also one of the decidedly fewer artists that released the album anyway, and embraced a few unorthodox promotional tools, like interviews and streaming performances on Instagram. This tape in particular is from a preview for her album All That Emotion that would be released some six-weeks later, and is a SiriusXM airing of their LIVE From Home sessions.
That should be about all the set-up this tape needs: TLDR; Hannah Georgas performs new tracks live from her house for SiriusXM.