Chase Rice provided a new take on how to bring live music back, proposing that concerts could have two sections for fans holding different perspectives on the COVID pandemic and risk of attending a show. One section can keep social distance rules in place, while another section would allow those who don’t believe in the need for social distancing to get as close as they’d care to and “go nuts”.
“There’s a way to do things that allow us to live our lives and do it safely,” Rice told CMT. “At concerts, you can have a section for the people who want to crowd the stage and go nuts and pretend like nothing’s going wrong in the world. Then you can have another section where people want to be distanced and still enjoy the show.”
Rice has been holding live stream performances from his farm, and has weighed in on the need (or lack thereof) for social distancing several times this year. He was one of several performers to chime in on social media earlier this month over large crowds with no social distancing in place – referencing students storming the field after Notre Dame-Clemson. “Great news y’all,” read his commentary posted over an image of the crowd in South Bend. “Concerts are comin back.” Earlier this year, he was subject to intense backlash after images of crowds at an early summer performance with no social distancing surfaced.
In his view, the decision of social distancing should be up to the fans themselves rather than public health authorities.
“Let’s give them the options and get concerts going again,” Rice continued. “At the end of the day, it’s someone’s decision to leave their house to go to a concert. It’s not my d–n job to tell them they can’t do that. It’s my job to provide them music so that we can live our lives the way we’re put on this earth to live. I think it is so important for people to have the choice to leave their homes.”
“Let’s get back to not being sheep,” he said. “Nobody’s forcing you to leave your house. But we shouldn’t be forced to stay inside either. Just give people the choice. I’m just here to tell you what I’m gonna do, and if you’re down with it, let’s go.”
Rice has a several performances already scheduled on his tour calendar in addition to livestream performances. On December 4, he’ll be taking the stage at Evans Towne Center Park in Georgia, with a show in Columbia, S.C. the following night. He also performs three virtual live streams between now and the end of December.