How Rochester Musicians persevere through the COVID-19 Pandemic


By Lauren Wixom

ROCHESTER, N.Y.- While many businesses and industries across the United States are beginning to reopen, the music industry is still struggling to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. Although Rochester musicians have dealt with many obstacles throughout the pandemic, many of them have found ways to cope during these difficult times.

Pictured above: Mikaela Davis (Photo from her Instagram: MikaelaDavis).

Many local musicians have turned to social media to help them express their music and continue to gain their following. Social media platforms like Instagram, Twitch, and Tik Tock have been a crucial aspect in sharing their music.

Local musician, Mikaela Davis has used platforms such as Twitch and Instagram to play live shows and let her followers know when she was releasing new music during the pandemic.

“During the pandemic, I used Twitch and Instagram live to play my music as it was the closest way I could to a live show. These social media platforms really helped me grow my following during the pandemic. The music industry was hit so hard when Covid happened and I am so grateful that these platforms allowed me to share my music to my fans while we were all stuck inside our homes”, Davis said.

Social media platforms have helped by allowing musicians to stay connected to their fans in a different way. Their music can be live-streamed or videotaped so that their fans can keep up with new song releases.

Pictured above: Nicholas Barbarto (Photo from his Instagram: Nicholaspaulbarbarto).
Pictured above: Nicholas Barbarto (Photo from his Instagram: Nicholaspaulbarbarto).

Rochester musician, Nicholas Barbarto has relied on Instagram to grow his fan base and continue his journey as a musician.

“I have used Instagram the most out of all the social media platforms during the pandemic. I used Instagram to share my new song releases with videos and live streams so my fans could watch and stay connected. The pandemic affected my career as a musician immensely. I was unable to play at local restaurants and bars like I did in the past to get my name out there. But social was the next best thing and helped me stay motivated to keep creating and releasing new music”, Barbarto said.

Pictured above: Shane McCarthy (Photo from his instagram: regalcaveman).
Pictured above: Shane McCarthy (Photo from his instagram: regalcaveman).

Local musician, Shane McCarthy has used Twitch to help him play live shows for his fans and releases his new album during the pandemic.

“The pandemic really affected me because my favorite thing in the world is to play music live for an audience. Twitch allowed me to live stream my music for my fans which I am very grateful for. I am looking forward to the days where I can play in person again for a large audience and connect with my fanbase. But Twitch has helped me grow my following over the past year and I feel very blessed about that”, McCarthy said.

Rochester musicians have utilized social media platforms during the pandemic to help them stay in touch with their fans, reach new audiences and help them stay inspired to keep creating releasing new music. Social media has been a huge factor in keeping the music industry alive and helping musicians preserve throughout the pandemic.

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