This is what the US’ first socially-distanced concert looks like

A mix of strange, lonely, hopeful and ultimately prophetic.

Travis McCready performs as socially-distanced concert goers watch

All Images: Kevin Mazur / Getty

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Breaking the trend of live-streamed, archival or otherwise online-only concerts amidst the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Travis McCready became the first musician to play host to a live concert compliant with the US’ social distancing guidelines, taking place at Arkansas’ TempleLive venue. Take a look at some photographs from the show below:

Photographs from the concert, as you can see, paint a strange picture – although not an entirely unfamiliar one, if no one likes your band. But that’s certainly not the case for McCready, frontman of blues-rock outfit Bishop Gunn, who played to a crowd consisting of ‘pods’ of fans, all keeping a minimum of 6ft / 2m from each other. The venue, operating at a greatly reduced capacity, checked attendees temperatures as they came in, and required them to wear masks when inside. McCready was joined on stage by a backing band, his Great Dane (named Van Gogh) and a sense that the world might never be the same again. Presumably.

TempleLive did not have an easy road to getting the gig going, either, having clashed with the state of Arkansas ahead of time, as NME reports. But after a postponement by a few days to and an updated safety plan, it was given the go-ahead.

While the photographs from the event are undoubtedly strange, we are in strange times. And as Rolling Stone reassuringly reports, sheer musicianship prevailed in the end: But by his fourth song … McCready had overcome the awkward vibe with the thing that enticed stir-crazy people to leave their homes in the first place — his voice. By the end, the gig took on the intimacy and casualness of a living-room show at your buddy’s house.”

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