Since the emergence of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), a lot of performances or live events were canceled in order to exercise social distancing. This means a lot of artists lost their main stream of income.

Around the world, we have been seeing a lot of musicians posting Live performances and partnering with television channels during the lockdown.

SABC News spoke to South African gospel artist Tshepang Mofokeng and Nigerian afrobeat artist Jammin.

Both artists say it is a very important time now to interact with supporters and come up with creative ways to keep in touch with them.

“It’s especially important to keep in touch with my supporters and fans. And generally, everyone close to me from family to friends. This period people are passing through a lot. A lot of people are passing through depression and some people have lost loved ones. So, it’s very important for you to communicate,” says Jammin.

They hope that after this pandemic everyone will come out stronger, and encourage everyone to spread positivity.

“I’d love to pass this message to everyone to all my colleagues that they should use their platforms to spread positivity and love,” adds Jammin.

Tshepang Mofokeng has urged everyone to stay home and adhere to the rules of the national lockdown.

“We need to stand together as a country, and we need to push forward so that we come out better. So that we lessen the infection rate and death rate. It is important for us to adhere to the rules in order for everyone to stay safe.”

In the video below SABC News talks with artists about the importance of interacting with supporters:

Economic measures

Sports, Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa, in March, announced a R150 million COVID-19 Relief Fund to help ease the impact of the coronavirus on the livelihood of those in the sporting and cultural sectors.

Tshepang says: “We are aware of measures put in place by government to help the entertainment sector and we are in the process of applying and hopefully some of us will get approved for the aid. So that it makes life easier because we don’t work a 9-5 job where even when we stay at home there is a salary at the end of the month. We work from gig to gig. Festival to festival kind of payment and that is why we have been affected.”

Jammin also says that he is also aware of measures that have been put in place by the Nigerian government to assist artists.

Even with the lifting of the lockdown, returning back to operations for musicians and the entertainment industry will be gradual.

In the meantime, fans can enjoy the increased engagement with artists who have found creative ways to entertain them as well as promote their albums.

In the video below COVID-19 relief plan is discussed.