Staying Alive with Music and the ever-present Covid-19

Singer Adam Zai or Dam Zai is happy to be performing live again.

SUBANG JAYA, Sept 13 – It’s back to live performances and decent income for musician, singer Adam Zai or Dam Zai.

While the past 18 months have been a painful drought for working musicians, singers, dancers and other artists in the entertainment industry, many like Dam Zai and celebrities have taken to earn a living with performances through social media platforms like Facebook and TikTok.

Originally from Sabah, Dam Zai, who now lives in Selangor said with the Movement Control Order (MCO), he had to stop his night gigs at several places and along with that saw a significant drop in his income from his singing engagements.

“I used to earn about RM300 a day sometimes for my performances but when live entertainment was stopped due to the Covid-19, I had to compensate my living with performances via the social media like Facebook and TikTok. With support from friends and others, I managed to stay afloat,” he told Weekly Echo following a performance at a popular restaurant in USJ here Saturday.

How is business now with him back to strumming his guitar and singing for an income?

“For a start, the income has come down a bit but it is a start, and I am glad that the government has opened up the entertainment sector,” Dam Zai said.

Dam Zai might be among the lucky ones who managed to navigate out of the dire straits most musicians and performers found themselves in since the pandemic showed up early last year.

Many entertainment outlets and pubs closed their businesses during this period, leaving its regular performers with no income and no place to sing or play their instruments.

Quite a good number have gone into the food business and some might stay there but there are a number of them yearning to go back to their entertainment business with the reopening of the sector.

The government announced the reopening of the creative and entertainment industry effective September 10 in states that have entered the second phase of the National Recovery Plan in fighting the Covid-19 virus.

The relaxation of the Standard Operating Procedures nevertheless come with limited audience capacity and fully vaccinated audiences for live performances and entrances into cinema theatres.