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The impact of Coronavirus on the global music industry

According to the World Health organisation, Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans. Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties.

In more severe cases, the infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death. Standard recommendations to prevent infection spread include regular hand washing, covering mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, thoroughly cooking meat and eggs. Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.

The coronavirus epidemic could spread to about two-thirds of the world’s population if it cannot be controlled, according to Hong Kong’s leading public health epidemiologist, Professor Gabriel Leung. The virus is quickly having a negative impact on the global economy from the sharp decline in the stock market and oil prices to the postponement and suspension of major sports competitions, tournaments and leagues.

The music industry has not been spared by any means, most especially the live performance scene as coronavirus has impeded the gathering of a large number of people. Popular Texas festival SXSW which was initially slated to hold on March 13, 2020, has been cancelled while Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival which triggered the infamous African Giant moment of 2019 and gave the world one of Beyoncé’s most thrilling performance set till date, has been postponed for 6 months, from April to October, with hopes that the virus will have been contained or better still, dissipated by then. Italy is in lockdown and France; Germany and Switzerland have banned public gatherings of over 1,000 people. In Scotland, groups of more than 500 have been outlawed.

US Pop Stars, Miley Cyrus and Madonna have called off their concerts as the impact of coronavirus continues to rise. Miley  Cyrus called off a trip to Australia, where she was due to headline a bushfire benefit concert while two Madonna shows in Paris have been cancelled after French authorities banned large gatherings.

The world is slowly shutting down as a result of this plague-like epidemic. Students are getting homeschooled and staff working remotely. Despite not being rampant in Africa, COVID-19 should not be taken lightly as even coronavirus conferences are being postponed as a result of, well, coronavirus.

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