Music is great, but live music is the best.

Music doesn’t come from a cloud or a search engine. People make music — so seeing it in person brings a deeper connection.

If you rarely see live music, it is easy to forget how much better it is.

When you think about listening to music, do earbuds and phones immediately come to mind? Do you mostly listen to music on the radio while traveling from one place to another? If you can’t remember the last time you saw a live performance, then it’s time to change that. When it’s possible again, get out with friends and family and see some live music, even if it’s at your favorite watering hole.

It will be good for the soul.

But for now, we wait and wait. It will likely be 18 months to two years, some say, before there’s a successful and widely available COVID-19 vaccine. That’s also how long several music business insiders say it may take for the concert and touring business to return to a modicum of normalcy.

The last concert I saw was back in the fall, when a group of friends rented a van and made the trek to Cleveland to see the Tedeschi Trucks at Delta State.

The actual show wasn’t what I hoped, as their second set went with the heavy instrumentals, more of a jam-band vibe. But seeing this 12-piece band for the second time playing the blues and blues-rock was a true delight.

After all, how many times will one of the world’s top living guitarists be a 40-minute drive away. Not many.

Derek Truck, who has played with the Allman Brothers Band in the past, is a bad man on the slide guitar. There are not enough words in a thesaurus to describe the super-human guitar virtuosity of Trucks. He is the Steph Curry and Tom Brady of the guitar world.

Before that, I saw rising country music singer Luke Combs a year ago in Tupelo with my son. The concert was fabulous and those hours spent with him are priceless. Music is something that brings us together — living purely in the moment. We aren’t thinking about his grades or my job or any other distractions. We are right there.

But now we wait — with venues and bars shut down from coast to coast.

Eighteen months, possibly two years.

New Orleans Heritage and Jazz Festival

Greenwood Commonwealth Sports Editor Bill Burrus, right, is pictured here with friend Lyn McCool while enjoying Pearl Jam at the 2016 New Orleans Heritage and Jazz Festival. Live music shows have been shut down due to health concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Concerts and big events will be the last to return. I am hoping next spring’s New Orleans Heritage and Jazz Festival in New Orleans will return in 2021. The cancellation of this year’s festival interrupted a 50-year New Orleans tradition.

I love outside concerts so we try to hit Jazz Fest every few years. These are just a few of my favorite Jazz Fest performances: Pearl Jam, Government Mule, Van Morrison, Grace Potter and Steely Dan.

Jazz Fest 2021 is set to return next year, April 22 to May 2. There is so much to see, hear and feel at live performances. I hope to experience that again soon.

Contact Bill Burrus at 581-7237 or bburrus@gwcommonwealth.com.

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