In many ways COVID 19 has impacted the music industry as we know it. We are very close to reaching a point of no return, we may have already sailed past that point. Years will tell. It has been heart-breaking to experience and to see many of my friends struggles as our livelihoods evaporate with no sign of aid from the government.
Teaching and learning music has been a blessing to so many of us during this very difficult time. For musicians it has been our only source of income within our area of expertise. A genuine lifeline and a more realistic one than Rishi Sunak’s suggestion of retraining. While it has been so valuable to us musicians both mentally and financially, the flipside shows an equally positive outcome for students. The number of people picking up instruments has rocketed with people looking for an outlet and distraction from their growing social media/gaming screen addictions which have also rocketed during this period. It’s pretty easy to draw a distinction between the two activities with playing an instrument being infinitely more beneficial for our mental health which is currently under fire. Yes under fire, in fact I’d say it is war in there.
Mental health has been such a buzz word in the last few years for good reason but never a better reason than now and we must arm ourselves to protect its stability. We can do this by pursuing positive activities such as exercise, reading, cooking, gardening and when those winter months draw in, music. There has never been a more important time to pick up an instrument than now and the more people that play, the better off the world will be when we emerge from the dark period.