Newcomer DJs struggle to break through due to Covid restrictions
Many large events, shows and nightclubs where DJs would typically perform were placed in jeopardy by the re-instated coronavirus measures which the government tightened up on July 9. It includes stricter limits to festival audience sizes, and a prohibition on multi-day events.
DJ Mike Willemsen who has been on tour for two months in China where clubs have been open again for a while, said this is particularly tough for artists trying to break through during the pandemic. “Over the past two years, there have been a lot of super talented young people who have made an impact in the industry. Some took a hit after making major investments. Under normal circumstances, they would have broken through”, Willemsen told Trouw.
“But that did not happen and you can see that they are no longer working. They are really going down because of that.”
Festival organizers are now also increasingly taking the safe route and booking artists that already have a large fan base. “They fall back on the familiar lineup that they know works; at the expense of newcomers”, Willemsen said.
Willemsen said he doesn't blame the festival organizers for their decision. “Festivals canceled last year have contractual arrangements with DJs who had already booked them. They are attached to the artists. Many of the line-ups that you will see in the coming year are from 2020.”
The organizers, Willemsen said, are also suffering under coronavirus restrictions. “Organizers have been working towards this summer for a year and a half. I think that the entire festival and catering industry will receive another huge slap in the face”, Willemsen said.
The stricter measures will remain in place until at least August 13, the Cabinet said. Festival group ID&T along with 30 other parties sued the government for prohibiting festivals, stating they are “on the brink of collapse”.