Editor's note: Today on the blog we're running the firsthand account of a new Switcher user. As more people participate in social distancing to help stop the spread of COVID-19, we've seen an influx of interest in livestreaming — and inspiring new ways for livestreaming to be used. This is one such story.
The day the (live) music died
My musical journey started a decade ago. I was active duty in the U.S. Air Force with a passion for music. In my spare time I would play piano at home and sing a lot of karaoke. When I was confident enough, I booked my first paying gig performing for two hours at a local dive, just me and my piano. Fast forward from 2010 to 2016 and I was a changed musician. My eight-year service in the military was ending, and I had just enough bookings that I was able to transition to a full-time entertainer without the inconvenience of a day job. I finally made the move to Music City in 2018 both to further my performing career and to start my songwriting career. Just before my two-year mark in Nashville, I had made quite a resume and name for myself as a performer, piano player, and songwriter. Not only did I have my own band and weekly residencies at the famous downtown Nashville honky-tonks, but I had also been hired to play piano for J Edwards and Jesse Keith Whitley. On March 3, 2020, I was officially hired to play piano and sing harmonies for 2019’s Indie Music Channel Awards “Best Contemporary Country Artist,” Ryan Daniel.
But on March 15, 2020, my plans changed. We had just finished a weekend rehearsal with Ryan for our upcoming tour when I was informed that the bars in Nashville were being officially shut down to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Absolutely devastating news for a musician who performs five to ten shows in those venues every week and relies on that work to pay bills. Not only did these venues close, but the tour we were supposed to start with Ryan was also postponed until further notice. In an instant, I went from being barely able to pay my bills to wondering how I was going to eat.