Covid Blues: Musicians in Lockdown

By Kaylan Prestwidge @kprestwidge_

Working from home sounds like a dream, and maybe so for most people, but unfortunately in many professions working from home is simply impossible – even with the aid of today’s finest, most modern technology.

It would be safe to say most live performance musicians agree a Zoom call can’t save the day on this one. These entertainers mostly rely on gigs such as weddings and special occasions or performing in busy restaurants and pubs to earn their money and since that is all strictly banned now, they must be struggling in a time like this.

Help from the government is available as Centerlink is providing funds for those who lost work in this industry, however some individuals slip through the cracks and are unfortunately ineligible for these payments.

Julia Ivory, an aspiring singer-songwriter who performs for a living, spoke candidly about the struggles of working as a 19-year-old supporting herself during a nationwide lockdown.

Serenading YouTube viewers while at home in lockdown. Video: Julia Ivory

“It’s become risky work, one day you have a job the next day you don’t and it’s honestly quite scary, as someone who isn’t eligible for industry funds it’s a very stressful time, bills continue to stack up but there’s no money coming in.”

Julia expressed how she is ‘living out of her savings account’ and fears she will be unable to afford to care for her sick cat. “She’s my best friend, my rock, my everything, she’s all I have locked up in this apartment alone”

The artist highlighted that this lockdown was more than just losing a job, and outlined the ripple effect it has had on individuals and their mental health especially.

“As someone who lives alone, when you fall into those dark places in your mind where you feel as if you have no purpose, it’s terrifying, you can’t go outside or distract yourself with something, and there’s no work to escape too … you’re stuck.”

Julia on stage at Mounties prior to Sydney’s COVID-19 lockdown. Video: Julia Ivory 

In a time where everything feels it is going wrong Julia was lucky enough to have recorded a music video before a harsh lockdown was enforced for her new upcoming single ‘To The Bone’.

Upon release the singer hopes this will provide her an opportunity to reach more people with her music and pave the way to a career in which she is able to do what she loves and is passionate about.

To check out Julia’s work and stay updated with her career, follow her on instagram @julia.ivoury_.

Featured image: Julia Ivory performing. Photo: Julia Ivory 

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