Better late than never? Spotify — more than a year after the COVID pandemic sent most of the world into lockdown mode — is launching a virtual concert series with a lineup of five groups and artists. Access to the live-streaming performances will cost $15 each.
The Spotify concert series kicks off next week with the Black Keys (May 27), followed by Rag’n’Bone Man (June 3), Bleachers’ Jack Antonoff (June 10), Leon Bridges (June 17); and Girl in Red (June 24).
“While some parts of the world are beginning to open up, we recognize not everyone is comfortable with or able to attend in-person events just yet,” the company said in announcing the virtual concerts, which it is presenting in partnership with producer Driift.
Tickets are $15 (not including tax) or the equivalent in a local currency; more info is available at the website spotify.live. The concerts will each run 40-75 minutes and while they are prerecorded, users will not be able to pause, rewind or fast-forward them (nor are they allowed to download the concerts, make their own recordings, or access the show on multiple devices with the same login details).
Virtual concert-goers can stream the performances on the web and cast they to compatible connected TVs using Google Chromecast or Apple AirPlay. Users must have a registered Spotify account; Spotify says tickets purchased for the virtual concerts are nonrefundable.
Spotify positioned the live concerts as yet another way it’s supporting artists, by helping them connect with their fans.
Here are the descriptions for each of the five Spotify concerts:
- May 27: The Black Keys will be coming to fans from one of their favorite juke joints, Blue Front Café in Mississippi.
- June 3: Rag’n’Bone Man will be playing at one of his beloved venues, the Roundhouse in London, where fans will virtually join him for an intimate performance.
- June 10: Bleachers’ Jack Antonoff will take fans on a journey from Brooklyn to Asbury Park, N.J. — all while on a city bus.
- June 17: Leon Bridges fans will hear songs from across his catalog as they get an inside look into the meaningful spaces at the Gold-Diggers Hotel, where Leon spent time writing, recording, and being inspired for his upcoming July album, “Gold-Diggers Sound.”
- June 24: Girl in Red’s Oslo-based performance will bring fans into a world in red (and a world of rock) with unique lights and video filters.
“I’m excited to collaborate with Spotify on this intimate concert experience,” Bridges said in a statement provided by Spotify. “I’ve truly missed seeing my fans around the world this year, and we are working hard to bring the concert experience to your home, thanks to Spotify.”
The Black Keys commented, “We have always been a band that loves to play live in venues of all shapes and sizes. The past year has been tough for musicians and fans alike, so we wanted to find a way to share this live performance of songs from our new project, ‘Delta Kream,’ from a place we love, the Blue Front Café, the oldest active juke joint in America. We’re excited to be a part of this new initiative with Spotify that will give fans a great way to connect with their favorite artists.”
Tickets for the five shows can be purchased for one of four time zones: North America (East Coast) and Central & South America at 8 p.m. EDT; North America (West Coast) at 8 p.m. PDT; U.K., Europe & Africa at 8 p.m. BST / 9 p.m. CEST & SAST (Southern Africa); and Australia, New Zealand & Asia at 7 p.m. JST / 8 p.m. AEST / 10 p.m. NZST.
Pictured above: The Black Keys’ Patrick Carney (left) and Dan Auerbach