While we’re just a few short days from letting 2020 gladly enter the history books, let’s take one last chance to recap a year certainly unlike any other in the music industry’s history. As the world grappled (and continues to grapple) with the COVID-19 pandemic, the personal and professional chaos affected every sector and industry, including the world of music.
Though we’ll certainly miss what would have been in a normal year — tours, festivals and likely a slew of new releases that will have to wait until 2021, at best — the unusual circumstances of 2020 did allow for artists and fans to innovate ways to connect and keep creativity alive. Artists such as Ariana Grande and Taylor Swift, who had more time on their hands than normal, channeled their energy into new surprise studio albums, while others, such as The Weeknd and Billie Eilish partnered with streaming entities to offer digital concerts. And don’t forget Verzuz, the Timbaland and Swizz Beatz production that allowed older acts to fulfill fans’ longstanding dreams of catalog competitions that has become must-stream TV whenever a new edition airs.