Memphis Tourism to host virtual online festival to support local musicians

Memphis Tourism to host virtual online festival to support local musicians
The Stereograms, a father-son band, will be the opening act. (Source: WMC)

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The local music industry has been devastated by the measures taken to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

To help musicians in need, Memphis Tourism is getting creative to live stream a virtual festival this weekend.

Normally you don’t have to go far to see live music in Memphis, but even with those performances now canceled, all of us can watch a festival this weekend from the comfort and safety of our home.

Memphis businesses get creative after mayor orders more closures due to coronavirus

“Who we are as Memphians is a community who has been culturally formed by music,” Jayne Ellen White with Memphis Tourism said.

This Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Jayne Ellen White with Memphis Tourism and I Love Memphis is organizing the Get Live! 3-day Virtual Music Festival that will be live-streamed for FREE on Facebook!

“To give an outlet for musicians here in Memphis who had obviously lost gigs that are suddenly scrambling to figure out what live music looks like,” White said.

Tourism slows in Memphis amid global pandemic

“I’m excited about it because it’s going to be different,” Graham Burks III said. “But it should be pretty cool.”

The father-son band the Stereograms is the opening act Wednesday for the virtual festival.

“It’s a new format, people are writing messages to the band and the band is reading them on stage and interacting with them,” Graham Burks Jr. said.

“Usually I’m playing in front of a crowd so I can actually see expressions and stuff but now I have to wait until the end of the song at least so I can look at the comments or something,” Burks III said.

The main goal of the festival is to raise money to donate to local musicians who have lost gigs and their main source of income.

The Stereograms aren’t taking any money for their performance, they hope it goes to help local artists who desperately need it.

“Right now we just hope that this little bit that we can do makes a difference,” Burks said.

“Let’s hang out, let’s do what we do best and hopefully we’ll raise some money in the meantime,” White said.

Copyright 2020 WMC. All rights reserved.