A number of bands and artists are coming together to put on a virtual benefit concert in Minecraft to raise money for coronavirus research.
Chiptune band Anamanaguchi is teaming up with iconic emo band American Football, electronic artist Baths, and a number of other musicians for the free show. The benefit, called Nether Meant, will occur in a fictional space called Elsewither, which is based on the popular Brooklyn bar Elsewhere. The concert will take place in Minecraft in an area where players can visit, and it can also be streamed on Twitch. The festival is being organized by Open Pit, which has thrown festivals in Minecraft previously, including Coalchella, Firefest, and Mine Gala. You get the picture.
Open Pit is selling VIP passes to attendees, which gives members access to a special area in game, exclusive in-game merchandise, and certain areas in Discord that will allow fans to talk directly with artists. The proceeds of these passes will go to Good360s coronavirus relief efforts, according to the event website. While people are encouraged to hang out in Minecraft to get the full experience, the event will also be made available on Twitch and in Discord.
More virtual concerts are beginning to be held in popular online games, including Minecraft and Fortnite. Marshmello famously performed a lengthy show in Fortnite in February 2019, while last month saw a number of DJs come together in Minecraft to throw an elaborate festival. The artist Soccer Mommy planned to perform for fans in Club Penguin. Stories of artists performing in online game spaces go back all the way to Second Life. Now, however, more artists are taking advantage of digital spaces because of restrictions to normal life that have arisen due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Nether Meant will kick off at 6PM ET on Saturday, April 11th. Instructions for reaching the concert in Minecraft can be found on the events website.