How the New Stimulus Bill Benefits Musicians
In the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic, small businesses and the self employed are amongst those who were hit the hardest. With hundreds of concerts, festivals, and gigs postponed or canceled, thousands of those working in the music industry had no clue what was going to happen next.
Under the new stimulus bill passed on March 28th, those self-employed musicians, songwriters, producers, touring crew members, sound engineers, and everyone in between that falls into the “gig economy” category were deemed eligible for financial relief. With this $2 trillion relief package, those who make under $100,000 can apply for loans and grants, along with some eligible to apply for unemployment depending on their state of residence.
The Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI), Songwriters of North America (SONA), and National Music Publishers Association (NMPA) who worked hard to pass the Music Modernization Act in 2019, proved themselves once again with working with members of Congress to ensure that the bill included diction such as, “sole-proprietors, independent contractors, and self-employed” to make sure that these type would quality for federal aid. This distinction was specifically designed to include music professionals with other American small businesses, and they will eligible to receive money through grants and loans as soon as April.
The Recording Academy’s MusicCares has also launched a COVID-19 relief fund with grants up to $1,000 with proof of canceled gigs. You can find more information about this at grammy.com/musicares/get-help/musicares-coronavirus-relief-fund. NSAI also has included a page on their website dedicated to updates on the Cares Act. You can find it at this link https://www.nashvillesongwriters.com/relief-self-employed-songwriters-musicians-and-support-teams.
To all of our friends in the music industry, stay safe, keep yourself healthy, and we will see you back and better than ever soon.