The Resurgence of Concerts Amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic

Live Music has returned to the Bay Area!


Hannah Lalonde

Thousands of people attended the recent Pitbull Concert, dancing in the mosh pit without masks.

Mia Hua, Culture Editor

The live music experience changed drastically with COVID-19, making in-person group events tricky regarding COVID-19 precautions and different people’s levels of comfort. 

Woodside students have recently attended more and more concerts as artists begin to play live music again. Because COVID-19 shut down live music for over a year, multiple artists scheduled their performances around this time, hoping that COVID would have subsided. While the Delta variant is still a significant concern, San Mateo County has 84% of the eligible population fully vaccinated, and people feel comfortable going to concerts again. 

Woodside senior Kyle Taylor recently attended the Pitbull concert at the Shoreline Amphitheater. Taylor was vaccinated earlier this year, but the COVID-19 precautions in place at the concert disappointed him. 

“There was no vaccine card check so anyone could get in even if they weren’t vaccinated, and when I got in, a lot of people weren’t wearing their masks,” Taylor said. 

The KISS concert that Woodside sophomore Melia Orozco recently attended provided much stricter COVID-19 precautions. 

“The concert was at an outdoor theater, and everyone was spread out on the grass at least six feet apart. They didn’t check vaccine cards, but there was an enforced mask mandate,” Orozco said. 

However, Orozco did notice a difference between the KISS concert and the other concerts she attended before COVID-19. 

“The live music experience definitely wasn’t as immersive. It was a pretty empty theater just because there was a lot of hesitancy to go, and they couldn’t fill to full capacity anyways,” Orozco said. 

Sir Chloe performed at the indoor venue Rickshaw Stop in SF. (Anya Mason)

California fully reopened on June 15th; new regulations recommend that outdoor venues verify vaccinations or provide a negative COVID-19 test. However, the regulations require indoor venues to verify vaccinations or negative tests, which Woodside senior Anya Mason prefers.


“While it still is a relative amount of exposure, it’s much less anxiety-inducing than larger shows and music festivals,” Mason said. 

Others, like Woodside freshman Chloe de Leon, didn’t feel comfortable going to concerts at all. Concerts bring together large groups of people, so the chances of contracting COVID-19 increase, bringing more risk to concert-goers. 

“My brother’s not vaccinated, so I’m worried that if I do contract it, I could unintentionally spread it to him,” de Leon said. 

De Leon would consider attending a concert only if all concert venues, regardless of size or capacity, checked every attendee for a vaccine card. But, no matter what, people are excited about the return of live music. 

“I feel like there is a level of community accountability that almost everyone honors,” said Mason. “There is just something really cool about enjoying music together as people and dancing and singing together. I don’t feel like COVID has taken away from either of those feelings.”