Live shows in the UK unlikely to happen in 2020, says medical expert

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The world of live music has been throw into chaos because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Most spring and summer festivals have been cancelled, while the majority of tours planned over the coming months have been moved to later in the year.

Last month, bioethicist Zeke Emanuel said he didn’t think concerts and sporting events would resume until the autumn of 2021 at the earliest – and now virologist Dr Chris Smith says this year “is basically a write-off” for the UK’s live music scene.

He tells the BBC: “The government has cost the country billions to get the transmission rate right down, and we know that a very good catalyst for spreading the thing and amplifying cases is getting loads of people together again – and that's exactly what goes on at concerts, matches, and other kinds of parties.

"So I can't see them saying, ‘You know what, we think everyone needs a party.’ It's too soon."

He says that in the near-term, "it's just not going to happen,” and adds: “I think this year is basically a write-off, if I'm honest with you.”

The UK has been in lockdown since March, with the government due to update the public on the current situation over the next few days.

While the current situation is creating havoc in the industry, artists and labels have been coming up with a range of ideas and initiatives to provide support during the crisis.

Here are 16 ways you can support the musicians, record stores, venues and music shops you love.

Scott Munro
Louder e-commerce editor

Scott has spent 35 years in newspapers, magazines and online as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014 before moving to the e-commerce team in 2020. Scott keeps Louder’s buyer’s guides up to date, writes about the best deals for music fans, keeps on top of the latest tech releases and reviews headphones, speakers, earplugs and more. Over the last 10 years, Scott has written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog. He's previously written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald newspapers, covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to tech reviews, video games, travel and whisky. Scott's favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Cocteau Twins, Drab Majesty, Marillion and Rush.