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Bonnaroo is postponed. Merlefest and, as of Tuesday, CMA Fest are canceled. The first third of the 2020 music festival season, with all its life and connectivity, has been wiped out by the Covid-19 virus. In this previously unimaginable void, artists have taken to the internet, but mostly as solo actors, gigging for tips. The creators of Shut In & Sing imagined how much festival dynamic they could bring to the crisis. They are songwriter Natalia Zukerman and journalist/radio producer Kelly McCartney, long-time folk music friends who live about an hour apart in the Hudson Valley of New York. (Read more.)

Christian Science Monitor

… for others the online shows are a matter of economic necessity. Last week, Erykah Badu and her band charged fans $1 to drop in on the first of a series of concerts in her living room. “I got a house full of masked engineers, musicians, techs, who are all out of work,” she said. Grassroots efforts are also helping musicians. Stageit, a web-based performance platform that bills itself as “a front-row seat to a backstage experience,” has been hosting singer-songwriters such as Caleb Caudle, Lori McKenna, and Jill Sobule for an ongoing “Shut In & Sing” virtual festival. Viewers can decide how much to pay for tickets. Other streaming sites offer virtual tip jars. (Read more.)


From locales as diverse as a shut-down Lower Broadway, the stage of the Grand Ole Opry and private homes, the webcast fund-raiser rapidly became a new normal, with results that were artistic, cathartic and financial. Some were individuals playing into their own phone cameras and soliciting donations via Venmo and Paypal. Some were participating in virtual festivals, like the multi-day Shut-In & Sing, co-created by former Nashvillian radio host and journalist Kelly McCartney and artist Natalia Zukerman, featuring artists from in and out of town playing ticketed shows over the suddenly in-demand platform. (Read more.)

Rolling Stone

With live music events at a halt and social distancing having become the new normal, many performing artists have lost an essential part of their income. But a new live-streamed concert series, “Shut In & Sing,” will bring artists and fans back together, while also offering financial support to performers during this challenging time. The live streams via StageIt will feature Chely Wright, Lori McKenna, Robert Randolph, Amy Ray, Emily Saliers, Amythyst Kiah and many others. Profits from the stream will be split between the participants. Organizers of the event are Hangin’ & Sangin’ podcast host Kelly McCartney and singer/songwriter Natalia Zukerman. (Read more.)


Evan Lowenstein founded Stageit a little over a decade ago and by last year was struggling to find ways to keep the business afloat. … His notion that environmentally conscious bands would turn to Stageit in lieu of carbon-intensive touring turned out to be little more than wishful thinking. This week brought an even more unlikely lifeline. Amid a near-global lockdown aimed at halting the spread of COVID-19, Stageit has added 10,000 subscribers in two days while hosting the virtual festival Shut In & Sing. (Read more.)

No Depression

One roots-music-themed online festival we know about is called Shut In & Sing, a series of StageIt shows aiming for “connection to be made in this isolation.” The shows are “pay what you can” and participating artists so far include Amy Ray, Caleb Caudle, Allison Moorer, Amythyst Kiah, Michaela Anne, Mark Erelli, the Ballroom Thieves, and many more. You can find the full list and showtimes here. (Read more.)

Rolling Stone

While many artists are staging their own one-offs, others are planning online festivals and concert series that will live exclusively online. Kelly McCartney, host of Hangin’ & Sangin’ and director of the Rainey Day Fund, alongside singer/songwriter Natalia Zukerman, is launching “Shut In & Sing,” kicking off March 19 with livestreamed performances from Chely Wright, Lori McKenna, Anthony D’Amato, Jill Sobule, Kim Richey, and more aired via Stageit. (Read more.)

Music Journalism Insider

Kelly McCartney has been in and around music journalism for a long time, but her career is hardly a straightforward one. For Kelly, writing was a side hustle for many years. In the short time that she’s been doing music journalism full-time, however, she’s become a major voice in the roots music community, most notably with her Hangin’ & Sangin’ podcast, which combines interviews and live performances. (Read more.)

Rolling Stone Country

Singer-songwriter Amythyst Kiah turns in a riveting performance of the haunting new song “Wild Turkey” in a live video … part of a new monthly series called Rainey Day Recordings aimed at highlighting artists from marginalized communities. …“No matter who you are, seeing your image reflected on stage and in the media lets you know that you aren’t alone in this world…” adds Kelly McCartney, executive director of the Rainey Day Fund.(Read more.)

Backstage at the Hutton Hotel

Meet Kelly McCartney, producer and host for the Americana music podcast Hangin’ & Sangin’, syndicated on radio stations in Nashville, Boston, Denver, and elsewhere. She’s already interviewed the likes of Béla Fleck, Ani DiFranco, Mary Chapin Carpenter, and so many more, with others still on the docket. We recently caught up with Kelly, who records her podcast inside our Writers’ Studios, about the genre, some favorite artists, and where she likes to go in town. (Read more.)

Los Angeles Times

Those who follow music writing were abuzz this week when new online publication Cuepoint arrived through Medium, and for good reason. Within its first few days, the site had published new writing by some of music criticism’s most recognizable names, including Robert Christgau, Tom Moon and dream hampton. …Kelly McCartney’s conversation with Sinead O’Connor is smart, thoughtful, and informative. (Read more.)