The practice of social-distancing during the covid-19 pandemic is based on “pseudo-science,” according to Van Morrison. The “Gloria” singer, who was knighted in 2016, made the claim in a short note posted to his official website.
Titled “Save Live Music,” the post derides the idea of playing live music to less than full capacity crowds, which Morrison is currently doing.
“As you know, we are doing socially distanced gigs at Newcastle Upon Tyne’s Gosforth Park, Electric Ballroom and The London Palladium,” he writes. “This is not a sign of compliance or acceptance of the current state of affairs, this is to get my band up and running and out of the doldrums. This is also not the answer going forward. We need to be playing to full capacity audiences going forward.”
Curious to see him assert that by agreeing to play to limited audiences he is not complying with public health guidelines. Why else would he do it? Because he wants to? Anyhow, he goes on to appeal to his fellow music industry professionals to lend him their support and help him “fight the pseudo-science.”
“I call on my fellow singers, musicians, writers, producers, promoters and others in the industry to fight with me on this. Come forward, stand up, fight the pseudo-science and speak up.
“Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber and myself appear to be the only people in the music business trying to get it back up and running again. Come forward. It’s not economically viable to do socially distanced gigs. Come forward now, the future is now.”
Thus far the response has been silence. Nobody has come forward, at least not publicly. But as Fox Business reports, Morrison caught some flak from his fans. As one of them wrote on his Facebook page:
“So you’re a scientist now too, Van? All because this is affecting you? Well, here’s news for you … it’s affecting us all. People who are fans of yours have gotten sick & some have died. Get your head out of your own fundament & think of others less fortunate than yourself.”
More than 800,000 people have died from covid-19 as of this writing. Morrison’s homeland of Ireland has fared better than most countries in Europe, with about 28,000 cases and less than 1,800 deaths.