The days of smashing our bodies together in disorderly fashion at heavy metal gigs seem to be behind us – for now, at least. As the world still gets used to what our "new normal" is going to look like, Corey Taylor has announced a socially-distanced and “Covid-19 Safe” tour, where of course, no pitting or group dancing will be allowed. The tour will run for 19 days, and is to kick off on May 18 at The Marquee Backyard in Tempe, Arizona. Covid-safe live music is better than no live music, right?
During the tour, fans can expect a setlist made up of tracks from Taylor’s solo debut CMFT, as well as Slipknot and Stone Sour songs, covers and a few surprises. Accompanying Taylor and his band will be the Cherry Bombs, a dance formation led by his wife Alicia Taylor. Known as "The Darlings of RocknRoll", the group is made up of professional dancers, aerialists, fire artists, hoopers and pole dancers.
In conversation with Rolling Stone about the upcoming tour, Taylor explains: "The Cherry Bombs are gonna do their show, with fire and aerial and rock and all the good stuff, then me and the boys will get up and play for, like, two hours."
Explaining how the idea for the tour came about, he says, "We'd been looking for opportunities to play here and there constantly, but it wasn't until a promoter friend of ours asked us how we would approach a tour with the kinds of safeguards we were interested in that we realized we could put a tour together.
“We'll be taking as many precautions as we can: the usual social distancing, pod seating (sectioned off area with an allotted number of people who came together allowed inside), temperature checks, waivers signed at the door, masks in place everywhere but your pod, etc. We're encouraging everyone to get vaccinated as well before the tour."
Taylor, who is all too aware of the impact no live shows has had on the music industry in the last 12 months, has been dedicated to getting the circuit back up and running through any means possible. While he's keen to kickstart live shows for the benefit of those who rely on them for an income, he also recognises that the loss of live music has been profound on fans, too.
He's also been fundraising throughout the pandemic. Last year, he auctioned off his guitar on eBay, raising $150,000 for Covid-19 relief, and also organised a socially-stanced secret L.A show to raise money for Sweet Relief Musicians Fund – a non-profit organisation that aims to support musicians and music industry professionals in need.
Pre-sale tickets are available now, with all remaining tickets going on sale to the general public on Friday, March 19.