More venues, music acts move forward with COVID-19 requirements to attend shows

DeJuan Hoggard Image
Sunday, August 15, 2021
More venues move forward with COVID-19 requirements to attend shows
Local venues like the Pour House and Motorco recently adopted policies to prevent the spread of COVID-19 to ensure the survival of the live music industry.

The show must go on. And in this case, it has to if the industry wants to survive. That feeling is being shared by many in the entertainment industry as the Delta variant surges across the country and mask mandates make a return.

In response to the increase in local cases and what some say have been a lack of guidance from small and big government, performance venues have announced COVID-19 requirements moving forward.

The Pour House in Raleigh and Motorco in Durham are among two venues adopting such a policy.

Motorco will require proof of being fully-vaccinated from COVID-19 for all of its shows on the calendar.

The Pour House will require proof of a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of attending a show or proof of being fully-vaccinated.

"We've decided that we need to take it into our own hands and do something to protect our business and our customers and our employees and the bands that performed with us," said Pour House owner Adam Lindstaedt. "And it feels like the right thing to do at this point in time. If they don't have proof of a negative COVID-test with 72 hours of the event they're not going to be let in. Simple as that."

The decision comes after Variety reported last week that Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino said that artists will require all artists and fans to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test, where permitted by law.

"Vaccines are going to be your ticket back to shows, and as of October 4th we will be following the model we developed for Lollapalooza and requiring this for artists, fans and employees at Live Nation venues and festivals everywhere possible in the US," Michael Rapino, president and CEO of Live Nation Entertainment wrote in a statement.

All employees will also be required to be fully vaccinated in to work an event.

Rapino's comments follow a Q2 earnings call from Live Nation when president and chief financial officer Joe Bertchold said, "I think what we're seeing is a shift to increasing requirements for entry of either vaccinated or tested or fully vaccinated." He continued to stress, "I think the great news is that at this point, the discussion is around what are the requirements to hold the events? What do we need to see in terms of vaccinations and testing? Not hearing discussions, certainly in the U.S. or the U.K. about impacting those shows to any scale."

Recently, ticketholders to the Maroon 5 concert on September 15 at Coastal Credit Union Music Park at Walnut Creek in Raleigh were notified via email that fans would need to show proof of a negative COVID-19 test within 48 hours of attending or proof they are fully-vaccinated, which is 14 days post your second dose of Moderna or Pfizer, of single dose of Johnson & Johnson.

On September 27, The Killers will be performing at Red Hat Amphitheater in Raleigh where there will also be COVID testing or vaccine requirements, per a notice on the venue's website.

"It's really the only option at this point to allow the music to continue," Lindstaedt added. "Otherwise, our industry is going to go into another lockdown and I don't know if any of us are going to really make it out of this second lockdown if that happens again."

Charlie Smarts with Raleigh-based hip hop group Kooley High said many artists did not financially survive the shutdown.

"Honestly a lot of artists quit," Smarts said. "A lot of artists ain't doing (music) no more, because, how can you be sustainable if you can't do shows? You don't get money from Spotify. You don't get no money from a lot of things that you used to get money from."