As social distancing and shelter-in-place regulations hold in place, musicians are continuing to use livestream platforms to stay busy and stay connected. The number of livestream events added to Bandsintown.com between April 22-28 rose to a weekly total of 3,109 (though some of these livestreams won’t play until a later date), up 21.5% from the previous week, which was already up 11.75% from the week before.
Bandsintown has tracked a total of 12,360 livestreams by 5,304 artists over 35 days (March 25 – April 28). That averages out to 2.33 livestreams per artist, up from 2.10 two weeks ago. The frequency of livestreams per artist has been inching up by 1-2% each day.
While that may look like a miniscule difference, the daily increase has been consistent, amounting to an 11% boost over the last two weeks. Original forecasts regarding the COVID-19 shutdown implied two or three months of no concerts, but the goalposts continue to shift regarding venues re-opening and live shows restarting. As this timeframe bends, livestreams will likely be more normalized, and artists will perform more regularly.
And not only are all artists slowly embracing livestream content, more ‘top artists’ are getting on board (Top Artists, per the Bandsintown x Billboard Touring Indexes, are artists with 250,001+ trackers on Bandsintown).
In Billboard’s last report on Bandsintown Livestream data, only 3.8% of all livestreams were by artists with more than 250,000 followers on the platform. Since then (March 20), that rate has risen to 5.3%, an increase of 41%. With more time to plan and new opportunities to monetize these virtual performances, we’re likely to see arena-level artists cashing in.