6 Ways to Start Reintegrating Into In-Person Music Sessions Safely

people wearing masks

people wearing masks

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As the world begins to reopen, in-person sessions are finally coming back around in full-swing in the major music cities. While most people are excited to see their favorite local musicians and collaborators again, it can still be nerve wracking to expose yourself to them and others.

After all, Covid-19 still exists whether you’re vaccinated or not.

So if you’re feeling nervous but excited to get back to those in-person sessions, whether to jam or co-write alongside other musicians, we’ve got some tips to keep you feeling as comfortable and safe as possible.

1. Outdoor Sessions

If the weather permits, outdoor sessions can be a great way to make your in-person session safer. Not only is it a known fact that strong sunlight kills coronavirus in the air, you’ll also be breathing fresh air, which means less chance at transmitting germs of any kind. It is the summer — get outside!

Plus, you get to earn bonus points for that nice tan you’ll be working on just in time for beach season. Two birds, one stone, right?

man playing music with mask

2. Fully Vaccinated Sessions

If you’ve got to do an in-person session inside the studio, you can always ask for proof of vaccination first; or use the calendar to your advantage by scheduling sessions conveniently after people’s second doses. Having someone send you a picture of their vaccine card can give you that extra dose of security you’re in need of.

Depending on the vaccine you and your co-writer’s received, you’re likely both 95% vaccinated and very unlikely to pass anything on to each other. As the saying goes, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

+ Read more on Flypaper: “Re-Open for Business: Adjusting to Your Post-Pandemic Creative Life.”

3. Masked Sessions

I know many of you don’t want to hear this one, but another perfectly suitable alternative is simply to wear masks throughout the whole session. Masked sessions can be effective in preventing the spread of the coronavirus. The downside of this idea is really the discomfort of wearing a mask for the full four or so hours while you’re working. Of course, it’s worth it if it keeps you feeling safe and comfortable.

Keep in mind, if vocals are being cut day of while in the studio, one person will have to take off their mask to sing. Ask your collaborators what they feel the most comfortable with, and take it from there. If you use an isolated vocal booth, that will work fine; just make sure to clean and disinfect the booth before and after the session.

4. Covid-19 Test Pre-Session

While Covid-19 tests have proven to be a bit on the shy side of reliable, they can still help give you peace of mind. Plus, they’re free. So asking your collaborators to stop by their local testing facility a day or two before the session can definitely help reassure you that you’re not exposing yourself or others to the virus.

Of course, there are some people who won’t want to be tested, or are simply too busy, so if you’re going to use this method, make sure to ask in advance so your collaborators can prepare accordingly.

+ New on Soundfly: Learn songwriting and vocal production from Grammy-winning pop artist, Kimbra, in her course: Vocal Creativity, Arranging, & Production.

Kimbra: Vocal Creativity, Arranging, & Production

5. Windows Open (and Six Feet Apart)

If you’re feeling a bit relaxed about everything, but you’re also wanting to take a few extra precautions, many of the sessions, especially here in the Los Angeles area, have opted to keep the windows open in the writing rooms. That way fresh air is circulating through the studio when at all possible and everyone is at less risk of catching anything.

If you start recording, you may have to close the windows, but that’s where the social distancing comes in. Try to maintain safe distances from your collaborators, even in indoor spaces.

6. Stick to Virtual Sessions

None of these methods helping you feel any more comfortable? That’s okay. The race to reopen your world should be taken at the pace you feel the most comfortable with. So if for now seeing and working with people in person just seems too far out of your comfort zone, stick with virtual sessions.

The pandemic greatly increased collaboration all over the world by allowing Zoom and other virtual, remote working sessions. And just because in persons are back, these haven’t stopped either. So if this is all you feel safe doing right now? Stick with it. No one’s going to judge you.

Remember, safety and comfort always come first. In an industry so based on emotion and creativity, if you feel uncomfortable, you’re most likely not going to come up with anything worth sharing anyways. So try a few methods out, and do what feels safest for you.

Any other great ideas on how to keep sessions safe? Comment below, and happy writing!

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