Brooks — who is the No. 1 best-selling solo artist in U.S. history, according to the Recording Industry Association of America — said that he fears for the musicians who are in the position that he was in 30 years ago, playing bars and clubs with the hope that it leads to a record deal.
“The rug has been pulled out from beneath them,” Brooks, 58, said. “How this affects the music industry in the future is a big question.”
Over the last 10 months, all five of these artists have been searching for safe ways to share their art and interact with their audiences. Baez has exhibited her paintings virtually, for example; Allen has taught live dance classes to a virtual audience of more than 35,000; and Van Dyke said that he was delighted to learn from fan mail that some children, home from school, had discovered “The Dick Van Dyke Show,” “Mary Poppins” and “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.” (“I have a whole new fan club!” he said.)
For Midori, 49, the Japanese-born violinist who gained fame in the United States after she performed with the New York Philharmonic at the age of 11, the pandemic has brought a greater appreciation for performing in front of an audience, in the flesh. She has given virtual workshops and master classes during the pandemic.
“It made me realize how precious the moments of being able to do things live are,” she said.