We know it's tough right now to stay positive. But we're here to let you know that it's not all doom and gloom. Keep your chin up, and find solace in music and the arts. So, each week, we're going to be bringing you our favourite positive music news stories from around the world. We hope it brings a smile to your face. Enjoy!
Two surprise albums released from Nine Inch Nails
Yesterday, Nine Inch Nails surprised their fans with the release of two brand new albums - as shared on Twitter and their official website. According to a touching message on the website, the albums, titled 'Ghost V: Together' and 'Ghost VI: Locusts', were released for "when things seem like it might all be okay" and "well, you’ll figure it out".
The band continued to say: "It made us feel better to make these and it feels good to share them. Music has always had a way of making us feel a little less alone in the world… and hopefully it does for you, too. Remember, everyone is in this thing together and this too shall pass."
Brian May starts 'MicroConcerto', a live-steam series to teach fans how to play Queen classics
As reported in the NME, Brian May has started a new series of music lessons called 'MicroConcerto'. Each day on Brian May's Instagram, you can get a live-streamed lesson on how to play some of Queen's greatest hits. Tracks so far have included the legendary 'Bohemian Rhapsody' and 'Keep Yourself Alive'.
Join Brian May each day here for your very own music lesson!
Paul Heaton & Jacqui Abbott to play free gig for NHS staff at Nottingham's Motorpoint Arena
Possibly our favourite music news story of the week, as confirmed on their social media channels, Paul Heaton & Jacqui Abbott will be performing a free concert at Nottingham's Motorpoint Arena. Tickets are available only to our hardworking NHS staff.
In a statement, the duo explained: "The Coronavirus pandemic should remind everyone, and let no-one forget, that our National Health Service is the most brilliant and significant institution in our lives. The men and women who serve us and care for us, give us hope and sacrifice their own wellbeing, can and should never be thanked enough. We are just musicians, so there is little we can do but sing for you. By way of appreciation, we announce the following gig for all frontline NHS staff. From the porters, the cleaners and the drivers, to the doctors and the nurses; thank you.”
Music community pulls together for #LoveRecordStores campaign to boost indie record shops
Across the word, the music community - including music companies, musicians, artists, fans and consumers - is pulling together for the #LoveRecordStores campaign. Stories are being shared online about the importance of independent record shops in the music industry and in individual communities across the world. As reported by Music Week, this is in an attempt to stimulate online sales and awareness in order to keep these crucial business afloat.
Leader of the initiative, Jason Rackham, MD of PIAS, said: “By speaking directly to their audiences about the importance of record stores and encouraging music fans to continue shopping with them online, artists can play a big part in helping secure the survival of this vital part of our industry.”
Fender is offering three months of free online guitar lessons to see you through lockdown
Last Friday, guitar manufacturer Fender shared a message on Twitter inviting music fans around the world to join them for three months of free lessons on the guitar, ukelele or bass. In order to "play through this together", the brand said that the first 100,000 customers who signed up to Fender Play would be eligible for the free service.
For details on how to sign up and learn a great new skill, head over to the Fender website.
Glastonbury Festival donates vital supplies emergency services
We're sure you are as gutted as we are that Glastonbury Festival won't be going ahead this summer for its 50th anniversary. However, it has been confirmed - as Tweeted by the Avon and Somerset Police - that vital supplies, due to be used for the festival in June, have been donated to the emergency services. This includes "thousands of litres of hand sanitiser, gloves & face masks".
I'm sure you'll join us in extending a huge thanks to Michael and Emily Eavis and the rest of the team at Glastonbury for supporting our most important emergency services!
Musicians Earned $4.3 Million From Bandcamp on Friday
Last week, music merchandising website Bandcamp launched a campaign to support artists and musicians, by waiving their fees on their website for a day. It was reported on their website that on a typical Friday, fans buy about 47,000 items on Bandcamp. On the Friday in question, fans bought nearly 800,000 items.
This led to approximately $4.3 million worth of music and merch being sold in one day. The website stated: "That’s more than 15 times our normal Friday, and at the peak, fans were buying 11 items per second."
Dua Lipa releases her new album 'Future Nostalgia' early
BRIT Award-winning singer, Dua Lipa, brought the release of her latest album 'Future Nostalgia' forward by two weeks. In a time where many album releases are being postponed, it's good to see Dua bringing some fresh new music to fans around the world.
As reported by Music Week, 'Future Nostalgia' is expected to be one of the biggest releases of the year. The first single from the album 'Don't Start Now' peaked at number two in the Official UK Singles Chart. We're glad to have it two weeks earlier than we'd thought!
Britney Spears breaks world record for the 100m sprint... before admitting it was just a joke
It's probably the wackiest music news story of the week, and one that won't be forgotten for a while. In a since-deleted Instagram post, Britney Spears claimed that she had run 100m in less than six seconds, beating the world record - set by Usain Bolt - by around four seconds. The internet, as you'd expect, went into meltdown.
Returning to Instagram yesterday however, Britney clarified the situation. Apparently it was all just a joke, and she cannot in fact run 100m in less than six seconds. Who knew? She signed off the post with "but you better believe I’m coming for the world record #joking".
Tune in next Friday for the next positive music news update!
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