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How Nottingham's Music Scene is Responding to Coronavirus

23 April 20 words: The LeftLion Team

We never thought we’d see the day that all our city’s gigs had to be called off, but that bleddy COVID-19 has put a temporary stop to the lot. It’s a trying time and then some for everyone involved in the music industry right now, from artists and technicians to venues and record shops. Yet in the face of this crisis we’ve seen some gargantuan spirit and rallying round in Notts, so while we’re not able to go to gigs for a while, we’ve chatted with some of our friends across the scene and scoured the net to show you what our music heads think of it all, what they’re up to and how you can support the local scene...

Maddy Chamberlain and Sam Keirl of DHP Family gave us their three top tips...

“Number one: Buy merch if you can, either from the artist or the festival or the venue. These things massively help and now, in most cases, artists have a load of merch meant for the tour that they now won’t be on for months.”

“Number two: It’s a great time to go searching for new artists. Look at upcoming gigs for later in the year and discover the music of the local scene. Streaming sites are going to be our best friend for the next few months so check out our listings and grab a ticket for shows later in the year.”

“Number three: Keep chatting and interacting with venues and bands online. Nottingham has such an incredible music community and we want that to continue digitally over the next few months. Messages really brighten up our day!”

Phil Booth, founder of JT Soar, shared some succinct wisdom...

“I'd say look after each other, see if spaces are doing crowdfunding and chip in or share if they need it. Buy bands who were due to tour's merch as it's likely they booked time off work for it and might get stiffed over that…”

Joe Fisher of Rainy Daze Recording Studio was able to remain open until recently...

“We were basically just self-isolating in the studio, but trying to keep our doors open to anybody that wants to practise or record while taking all the right precautions. We also started a nightly radio show where people can get involved and have a chat so if they’re feeling lonely in isolation they can tune in. Everybody is in the same boat and I think we just all have to stick together and wait out the storm. We were just trying to keep spirits up.”

Radio has risen from the ashes

Though heading out to live music might be off the cards, dancing at home is very much allowed, making it a big moment for internet radio stations. Two local outlets have risen from the ashes, setting up their platforms again (remotely) to showcase local talent and offer some musical therapy.

Mimm might have temporarily shut up shop, but they’re still pushing out that creative, cultural goodness after bringing back Mimm Radio

“In the face of adversity, we have decided to make a negative into a positive. @mimmradio will be back on air from next week so we can stay connected with you guys and support the local music scene through this tough time. We will create a safe environment for DJs, Promoters and Presenters to reach you at the comfort of your home over the coming weeks.”

The daily programming has recently seen Ella Knight, Trekkah and Saziso entertain its listeners. Alongside feel-good mixes and archive sessions, we can expect some conversational sets over the next few days - sometimes there’s nothing more soothing than hearing a voice mumble through the speakers…

Where Mimm offers mellow melodies, when you’ve got pent-up energy to release then another archive station, MyhouseYourhouse, can certainly offer the remedy...

“We are MyhouseYourhouse. We’re back, because it’s time you were #BackInTheHouse”

Established in 2005, this dance hub hung up its headphones in 2018 but is broadcasting once more to a very eager audience. Trekkah features again on the schedule, joined by Tasogare’s London Lockdown show, Self Oscillation from Matthew Orrell and Carole Kelly and House Cleaning with Kyle Douglas.

Both stations have available slots, so tune in and get in touch.

Charity hasn't been forgotten

Alongside artists supporting artists, and many rallying around to support the scene, there have also been beautiful efforts from local artists and promoters to support wider causes too.

Krudd founder and Original Sounds MC Bru-C raised £1.1k for the NHS through a clothing collab with mental health project, eott., while Wigflex is offering dancers the option to donate ticket refunds from their EP launch party, planned for this weekend, to the Nottingham Robin Hood Fund.

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