DJs reveal a dip in bookings for New Year’s Eve bashes owing it to Covid-19 restrictions(Photo: Parveen Kumar/HT)
DJs reveal a dip in bookings for New Year’s Eve bashes owing it to Covid-19 restrictions(Photo: Parveen Kumar/HT)

It’s ‘not’ the time to disco this New Year’s Eve say popular DJs

While some say that the night would equivalent to ‘Diwali’ and bookings used to happen 7-8 months in advance earlier, others express concerns over organisers not willing to shell out money for artists.
Hindustan Times, Delhi | By Sanchita Kalra
UPDATED ON DEC 18, 2020 05:31 PM IST

Ringing in the New Year, belting out the hottest music tracks at parties, has been a normal for DJs in the pre-Covid world. However, to usher in 2021 in the new normal, DJs reveal a dip in bookings for New Year bashes.

While some say the night would be as big as Diwali for them, and that bookings used to happen seven to eight months in advance, others say that due to present conditions, organisers are not willing to shell out money. However, DJs are preparing for last-minute bashes with standard operating procedures such as acrylic barrication on the DJ console, no use of hand-held mics etc.

Small gatherings, few queries

“I’ve been getting enquiries and requests but there’s uncertainty regarding the location or private parties as the number of guests at social gatherings have been restricted. Moreover, due to fewer guests, I don’t think clubs will be able to earn much revenue. New Year used to be Diwali for us but we are not able to earn like last year,” says DJ Sumit Sethi. He hopes for a better party scenario next year.

Organisers don’t have the money

DJ AJ feels it will be almost ‘low and no business’ this year for performing artistes. He says, “New Year’s Eve is looking slow for now. There are no big commercial events taking place as the market is still struggling. Earlier, we used to get booked seven to eight months in advance for New Year gigs. Moreover, organisers don’t have the money to shell out. Our fees would go up to three times for such gigs till last year.”

Last-minute call or virtual gigs?

Many are not signing up for gigs and instead waiting for last-minute plans according to the new regulations. DJ Suketu says, “Enquiries are coming in, but it will be a last-minute call. Some states such as Karnataka and Maharashtra might have a curfew. So it’s quite a risk for club owners and promoters to book an artiste, sell tickets and then take the pain to initiate a refund. So, we will wait to see what happens or have a virtual gig.”

Precautions come first

For live performances, safety and health are the top priority in Covid-19 times as DJs are adopting stringent precautionary measures. Most of them have laid out standard operating procedures. DJ AJ says, “Our new guidelines include no meet-and-greet with guests, acrylic barrication on the DJ console, no use of hand-held mics, to name a few. We are also getting Covid-19 tests regularly because as an artiste, if we get sick, we lose out on the next 10-15 days which is season time for us. As it is, the year has been quite rough for us.”

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