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Live music industry attempts to bounce back after feeling effects of COVID-19

Local News

The halftime show performed by The Weeknd during Sunday’s Big Game received a wide range of reviews from fans on social media.

Some even stating how much they’ve missed live music. But how has live music and entertainment been affected by the pandemic?

“This whole virus has kind of caused so much instability for many of us in this industry especially. I didn’t do one Elvis job all last year, but with the DJ business, it was pretty much shut down,” said Kenneth Opsal, from Elvis Entertainment and DJ.

Opsal also said that he enjoys performing his Elvis impersonations at nursing homes, however, he believes it will be a long time before he can go back.

Johnny Collier said that travel restrictions and the pandemic have affected his ability to go on tour.
Collier said he was touring in New Mexico when nationwide shutdowns began and was abruptly sent home.

A year into the pandemic, capacity limits still put a strain on touring musicians.

Collier said, “A lot of the states haven’t opened up and if they are, they’re only 25 percent, 50 percent capacity.”

He also said pay has dropped dramatically and that driving out to shows can sometimes cost him more money than he makes at the show.

Collier’s wife and band manager say that it’s more than just the businesses and talent that are affected.

She said, “Not only is there a whole lot less bands that are being hired for any of those venues that are able to do that, but you have to consider too that there’s the vendors that are affected, the people that bring in the foods and the drinks and the merchandise and the stuff that you buy when you go to that kind of experiences.”

Businesses and musicians alike are asking for your support, and looking forward to entertaining the public once again.

If you’re missing live music, Johnny Collier will be playing shows at the Lonesome Dove in Mandan every night starting at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.

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