To replace the 2020 iHeartRadio Music Awards — one of several awards shows canceled in response to the coronavirus pandemic — Fox and iHeart Media are set to present an hour-long benefit concert on Sunday, March 29. According to Deadline, Elton John has signed on to host Fox Presents The iHeart Living Room Concert for America, which will spotlight the sacrifice of first responders, medical professionals and others on the frontlines of the fight against the spread of COVID-19.
So far, the networks have confirmed performances by Alicia Keys, the Backstreet Boys, Billie Eilish, Green Day frontman Billie Joe Armstrong, Mariah Carey and Tim McGraw, though others are set to appear as well. Each artist will essentially put on an independently-produced, in-home performance, using his or her own audio and video equipment.
The iHeart Living Room Concert For America is set to air commercial-free from 9-10 p.m. and will be simulcast on FOX and iHeartMedia radio stations across the country, as well as the iHeartRadio app. Those tuning in will be encouraged to make donations to Feeding America and the First Responders Children’s Foundation.
Over the past few days, several artists have offered livestream performances from the comfort of their homes in an effort to encourage their fans to practice social distancing, as suggested by the CDC and other health officials.
Latin megastars Alejandro Sanz and Juanes – who both saw performances cancelled as a result of the pandemic – were ahead of the curve with an online special called “The Tour Stays Home For All” on March 15. Once Los Angeles became among the first U.S. cities under a “shelter at home” order, Chris Martin and John Legend kicked off a series of “Together, at Home Solidarity Sessions” in partnership with Global Citizen and the World Health Organization.
The Together At Home series has grown to include the likes of Charlie Puth, Camilla Cabello & Shawn Mendes, and Common, to name a few. On Thursday, March 19, Verizon launched a similar initiative — the “Pay It Forward Live” series — with an at-home performance by Dave Matthews.
Plenty of artists have also thrown quarantine concerts on their own, including Keith Urban, Bono, Erykah Badu, Metallica, and K-pop group Golden Child. Husband and wife duo Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood brought in and impressive 3.4 million viewers to their Facebook Live performance on March 23, USA Today reported.
Musicians have been providing fans with other types of entertainment as well; Sheryl Crow and Lizzo have offered guided meditation sessions, for example. Miley Cyrus launched an Instagram live talk show of sorts called “Bright Minded,” which has seen her interview a wide range of guests, from Ellen DeGeneres to Hailey Beiber and Love Is Blind fans’ favorite couple, Lauren and Cameron.