Hello, I’m JD Beauvallet, writing to you from London!
May 9th has been a special day for a few years now: spurred on by its partners from the European Union, Europavox has been celebrating music with a series of Parisian concerts. This year, unfortunately, Covid-19 has invited itself, condemning these physical, happy celebrations of Europe Day to cancellation.
However, the lurking of a sadistic virus will not keep our music silent, or cause concerts to disappear, and musicians to shut up shop. On the contrary: we have never needed music so much. Take a simple look at social media, and you will notice how culture, and especially music, has become a safe place, a comforter, an escape to lighter, peaceful times. We exchange content like never before, implementing a new solidarity that extends to every facet of society, listening advice, playlists and CD covers brandished like talisman.
The European Union and Europavox have chosen, on May 9th, through a gigantic online concert, to celebrate the eternal flame of European creation. An eternal ambassador of breakthrough names and new sounds, Etienne Daho has agreed to be the godfather of this effervescence. Alongside all the broadcast artists, he will also explain in-depth his relationship with music.
Live from basements and improvised studios since lockdown, from a trailer or a hangar, more than thirty acts, representing the countries of a borderless and limitless Europe, have rallied to ensure music remains a party. They have coped with constraints using tips and tricks. To escape from a puzzling daily life, they have given careful thought to scenery, decor and even choreography.
From Finland to Greece, Ireland to Iceland, they have answered our questions during introductory interviews before their performances. Some have welcomed our camera in their pyjamas, in their childhood bedroom still full of posters, or on a beach, others insisted on presenting their precious instruments, their cult items or even their hammock.
All have, above all else, expressed how happy and relieved they feel about coming back to music together, after so many days of isolation, deep thoughts and questioning. What is stupefying with these meetings, is the certitude that solidarity and unity born in this hardship won’t be in vain.
With enthusiasm, without promotional cant, these young Europeans have shared their lockdown situation, their slow living, but also their places, friends, projects and delicious meals they all dream of tasting again after the crisis. All are members of an active, nomad generation, one which evoked its visceral attachment to Europe. In these times of inward-looking attitudes, they are nostalgic for the future, and are not asking for “less Europe”. On the contrary: they are dreaming of “more Europe”, a more united Europe.
We also systematically asked them what makes them happy. The answer was promptly given with a big smile: music, almost every time. It comes, really, from their hearts.
May 9th, 2020