The studio for "Live from LA"John Legend kicks things off on May 16.
John Legend, The Score and Katelyn Tarver are part of the initial lineup of a free live music series broadcast on smartphones and VR headsets via the MelodyVR app.
The MelodyVR crew set up a studio in LA and will utilize VR cameras and technology "to bridge the gap between fans and artists at a time when tours and events are on hiatus," according to the announcement.
The series is generating funds for the MusiCares COVID-19 Relief Fund, established by The Recording Academy and its affiliated charitable foundation MusiCares, to raise money for the thousands of music creators and professionals without work, whose livelihoods have been devastated by the imposed employment bans.
Dubbed "Live from LA," the concert series kicks off this Saturday, May 16, at 6 p.m. PST, with performance by John Legend. Other performers include Katelyn Tarver (May 19), The Score (May 17), and Machine Gun Kelly (tba). Many more are to be announced.
John Legend, who releases a new album, Bigger Love, no June 19, commented: "Come and join me for a very special performance live from MelodyVR’s studio on Saturday May 16. While we can’t be together in person right now, I'm excited to share this moment with my fans."
MelodyVR has taken every precaution to ensure artists and crew don't come into contact during the production of "Live from LA." Artists and performers remain in isolation for the duration of the performance, and do not come into contact with the public or on-site crew, MelodyVR crew will communicate with artists and handle all technical and production needs from a separate area. "There is no direct, in-person interaction between artists, their teams and MelodyVR team," the announcement states.
The studio is "extensively sanitized" after every session, artists have a separate entrance to the building and to the performance "to enable them to drive from door to door, enter the building, perform, and head home, with no cross-contamination."
Anthony Matchett, CEO of MelodyVR, said: "The current absence of concerts and festivals is extremely damaging to both artists and to the music industry, and as a company that’s dedicated to virtual events and immersive content, we wanted to utilize our unique technology to create a solution. Our new studio facility in LA provides a safe, innovative, creative space for artists wishing to reach their fans digitally while they are unable to perform publicly. I’m thrilled to be working with our partners throughout the industry, including artists, managers, record labels and promoters to bring this series of exclusive performances to fans."