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New, free virtual music and art fest seeks to bring together a community and provide support for struggling creatives during a difficult time.

While we find ourselves in the midst of a global pandemic, most musicians, artists, and other creatives are struggling due to the mass cancellation of cons, festivals and other events. And it’s not just the artists who are suffering; fans are also being denied the opportunity to take part in these important events that help create a sense of community and allow us to celebrate the best life has to offer. Now more than ever, we need this kind of positivity and artistic expression.

Our music editor recently did a great article on ways to help support our favorite creators during this difficult time, and you can check that out here. We are excited that more people are finding creative ways to bring our community together and keep the love and celebration of art and music alive.

In that spirit, we are thrilled to help support The Lockdown Rock Down event.

The event is the brainchild of entertainment journalist and horror fiction author Boris Lee, in partnership with Metal Babe Mayhem.

Boris’ music blog, Symptom of the Metalverse, appears on Alison Masson’s metalbabemayhem.com. Discouraged by the negativity bred out of fear and political divisiveness, and looking for a way to spread joy and create unity, he came up with the idea to put on a virtual music and arts fest, hosted over social media.

Lee had this to say about the inspiration for the virtual festival:

“No matter how we got to this point, we are all in this together. For the first time, the population of the world is in the SAME boat thanks to the pandemic. So maybe we can all come together in a positive and creative way to keep our passion going, and entertain the masses on a stripped down, more intimate level.”

Here’s how it works:

Musicians and bands will submit pre-recorded segments of performances. These will be published on social media at specific times in the day to recreate the magic of bands taking the stage for a live set at an actual festival. Boris also encourages the performers to take time to address the audience with words of comfort and encouragement to help us get through this time of crisis.

Between video sets, he invites artists, actors, and authors to submit pre-recorded video segments to expand the fest beyond just music. Whether it’s doing readings of original fiction or poetry, doing a “live” sketch or painting, enacting a small scene from a film, or just offering a message of hope and the power of art and creativity to bring the world together — anyone who wants to participate is welcome and encouraged.

The festival will air on Metal Babe Mayhem’s Facebook page on Saturday, April 11, 2020 from 5pm to 12am PST (times subject to change based on official line-up). 

Musicians are encouraged to get creative with their segments, which may include a 15-minute clinic on how to compose a song, a stripped-down acoustic session, or just an instrumental jam. The goal is not to be super polished and professional, since we’re all stuck at home with limited access to high end equipment and filming. Instead, this will be an intimate celebration of art without a lot of bells and whistles.

This will be a completely free event, as the goal is not to make money but just to do something positive for the community.

Performers will have the chance to share fundraising or donation links for viewers who want to help support them while they are unable to attend events and earn a living playing music or making art. They will also be able to sell merchandise.

SUBMISSION DETAILS 

Whenever possible, please submit new material specifically for this fest. While high quality, previously recorded footage will be accepted, the festival asks that you not include donation requests for these segments. Donation links may only be included with new material unique to this festival.

If you do not want to do a performance video, or a creative clinic on your craft, if you are willing to do a thirty-second to one-minute message for the audience saying hello and wishing them the best through these times and updating them on your status, that would be an amazing contribution.

If you are willing to participate in The Lockdown Rock Down, please email Boris Lee at mistermetalproductions@gmail.com by Monday, March 30, 2020.

THE DEADLINE TO SUBMIT CONTENT FOR THE EVENT IS MONDAY, APRIL 4, 2020, AT 8PM EST. Anything submitted after that will not be accepted for the event.

It’s important to note The Lockdown Rock Down is NOT a genre specific event. The event is open to rap, goth, punk, and… wait for it… country music submissions. This event is about creative unity and comforting the world through that creativity.

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