• molly laura bosshart

instagram lives are the new black: molly bosshart's favorite artists who've gone live

Whether you’re stuck in a house with your parents for the first time in four years, or locked in your apartment alone, I think it’s safe to say we’re all getting a little stir crazy. I live in the middle of downtown Chicago, in my student apartment, newly-alone because my Californian roommate moved home to be with her family now that all of our classes are online. Coronavirus is spreading quickly in Chicago right now, and the city is becoming somewhat of a ghost town.


It’s an odd time in the world and, as I’m sure many of you are, I’ve been turning to music for some time away from my own thoughts. I’ve been following Harry Styles’ advice, listening to lots of live versions of my favorite songs, trying to remember what it’s like to be in a venue full of people.


Dance breaks are now a large part of my daily routine. Instagram livestreams have also wormed their way into my life (did anyone use Instagram live before all of this??). I find myself blasting an artist’s live as I make my afternoon breakfast, work from home, and try to tackle the unreal mountain of online homework I now have. I’ve reached a point where I’m looking for any form of human interaction possible, if we can even count commenting on a livestream as interaction. I also am searching for a way to fill the void in my little, concert-loving heart, and Instagram lives have been the closest I have come in the past couple of weeks.


A personal favorite of mine, Fredo Disco, has introduced “Fredo Fridays,” a weekly show, recurring as long as the coronavirus quarantine is still on. The hour-long livestream includes q&a’s, live performances, and special guests. Last Friday, Fredo brought on Eric Egan of Heart Attack Man, and the pair discussed their favorite mugs, gave tours of their refrigerators, and ate whole fruits, peel and all. It’s truly something you cannot miss. Fredo has also played a mini acoustic set on the live, taking song requests and going so hard that he breaks a guitar string. It’s something to look forward to every week, which we all need right now.


You can tune into “Fredo Fridays” on Fridays at 6 PM CST on Fredo’s Instagram.


With the temporary loss of real life music festivals, virtual ones have bloomed in their place. Uncancelled Music Festival began on April 2 and will continue every single day until the world of in-person performances is back in motion. The festival’s purpose is to provide support to musicians who rely on income from live performances, and a portion of the proceeds goes to MusiCares, an organization that helps musicians out in this weird time. Here’s how it works: venues from across the world book artists for each of the 10+ stages. Each show is ‘pay what you want’ (with an opportunity to tip during the performance), and the lineup is absolutely stacked. Snailmail, The Aces, and Beach Bunny are some of my favorites that have already performed.


You can purchase tickets for Uncancelled Music Festival at uncancelledmusicfestival.com.


Music 2 Meals is another online festival born out of all of this. It was founded by Mackenzie Brown and Hanna Ibarra, and its purpose is to support No Kid Hungry, an organization working to help families whose children rely on school meals. The first round of lives kicked off this past weekend with performances from Raffaella, Briston Maroney, and Surfliner, among many others. During each show, viewers are encouraged to donate to Music 2 Meals to support the effort.


You can find more information on their Instagram.


Lots of my favorite bands have been doing ‘one-off’ live shows as well, and although these don’t come regularly scheduled, I encourage you to try to tune in when an artist you love is going live. Recently I’ve caught performances from Sam Fender, Naked Giants, and Sea Girls. It’s been helping the time pass by just a bit quicker, and it’s the closest we can get to standing in a venue for the time being!


Molly Bosshart is a writer, gemini, and Harry Styles devotee from Chicago, Illinois. You can find her on Instagram @mollybosshart and Twitter @mollyliveontour.

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