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MusicHelpsLive: New Zealand music industry announce support campaign

In the words of The Police, we're "sending out an SOS"

The music industry is always one of the first to put their hands up and band together to support others in times of crisis, but now they need your help.

In the past month, we’ve seen live music cancelled en masse throughout the country. New Zealand musicians and those who work behind the scenes are facing an uncertain future.

For eight years, MusicHelps has been the music industry’s charity and among its core activities has been providing emergency financial support and professional counselling to kiwi music people when crisis strikes. They have now launched MusicHelpsLive to specifically support people and organisations doing it tough right now.

MusicHelpsLive aims to raise $2 million dollars to see kiwi music people through the coming winter. All funds raised will be distributed to those music workers whose livelihoods have been shattered as a result of the current crisis.

MusicHelps board chair and MusicHelpsLive spokesperson Campbell Smith says, “New Zealand’s musicians and the teams behind them are always there for us in times of trouble and tragedy, like the Band Together concert after the Christchurch earthquakes and You Are Us/Aroha Nui concerts following the Christchurch terror attacks. Now they are the ones that need our help.

“COVID-19 is having a devastating effect on the live music industry and the livelihoods of thousands of kiwi music people and businesses. Shows are cancelled, venues are threatened; production suppliers, roadies and crew are without work. With almost no notice, these hard-working, ordinary New Zealanders and their dependents are facing levels of distress and hardship never seen before.”

There are other ways you can help too:

  • Consider donating your refunds or a portion of your refund from cancelled shows to the venue or MusicHelpsLive.
  • Hang onto your tickets for rescheduled dates. By keeping your ticket you keep funds in the industry when it is most needed. It also means the artists don’t have to start their marketing campaign all over again, therefore, saving money and resources in promoting the shows.
  • Keep streaming and buying New Zealand music and merchandise – directly from artist websites, through local record stores (online), Bandcamp, Patreon or via your favourite streaming services – Spotify and Apple.
  • Spread the word – contact your preferred radio station and ask them to play your favourite Aussie artists or write a letter to your local MP.
  • Message your favourite musician or venue and offer moral support. Or, ‘Pay It Forward’ and buy a gift voucher for your favourite artist at their favourite rehearsal, recording or production studio.
  • And most importantly, when we are able to gather en masse again and share in the power of the live experience, please buy tickets to gigs and go and see your favourite acts.

If you have the means, MusicHelpsLive is calling on New Zealanders to visit www.musichelpslive.co.nz to make a donation or find other ways to support the live music industry.

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