It’s safe to say, 2020 has not been a good year in most respects. For live music junkies, it has been especially hard without a concert fix and the ability to jam out at live events. A variety of virtual events have cropped up to fill the hole left in our hearts and in some cases have exceeded our expectations! Not only have there been once-in-a-lifetime musical events(!), but there has also been an explosion of celebrity podcasts and live-streamed table reads of the world’s most beloved nostalgic movies. Much more virtual entertainment is to come, but there’s definitely more than enough digital events to hold us over until the end of the year. The best part? Unlike live events, you can relive these over and over again until live music returns. So in the meantime, here are some of the most rewatchable moments from our favorite virtual affairs this year.
Red Rocks Unpaused Presented By Visible
One of the best concert experiences of the year took place at Red Rocks Amphitheater in September. Red Rocks Unpaused, presented by Visible, featured three unforgettable nights of the hottest acts in the music industry. Indie darling Phoebe Bridgers kicked off night one, performing some of her latest hits from her album Punisher, like “Garden Song” and “Kyoto.” To close out the first night, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats took the stage, performing hit songs like “S.O.B.” and newer songs off their 2020 album And It’s Still Alright.
Night two had a decidedly different feel, almost as if it was an entirely different concert experience. Lil Baby was up first with an energetic performance, blasting through songs like “We Paid” and “The Bigger Picture” in a high-octane show. Not many entertainers could follow such a big act, but the next one up, Megan Thee Stallion, had more than enough talent and energy to do so. She was the perfect performer to close out the night, right as the “Hot Girl Summer” season was coming to a close. Megan performed that summer-defining hit along with her other viral 2020 hit, “Savage.”
The last night of the concert proved to be just as iconic as the first two, with two country music stars gearing up to take center stage. Brett Young opened the night and his West Coast/Southern sounds filled the air. Young had plenty of songs to choose from, including his latest hit “Lady,” as well as older hit songs like “Mercy” and “In Case You Didn’t Know.” He was the perfect opener for the next act—another country crooner by the name of Sam Hunt, of “Body Like A Back Road” fame. Hunt closed out the once-in-a-lifetime concert experience like the pro he is, belting out hits like “Take Your Time” and “Hard To Forget,” which sounded brand new in the Red Rocks Amphitheater’s natural acoustics.
Luckily for music fans, this concert experience is available to stream. Those who sign up for Visible, the first all-digital wireless carrier that gives you unlimited data, messages, and minutes via Verizon’s 4G LTE Network, not only get a great phone plan for $40 a month, but they also receive access to exclusive events like the Red Rocks Unpaused concert series, plus so much more. These kinds of experiences are key during the Covid-19 pandemic, as they allow us to still enjoy all the entertainment without any of the worries.
Other Virtual Concert Events
Naturally, there have been many other virtual concerts performed this year, with country music legends like Garth Brooks and Keith Urban leading the pack. Unlike the Red Rocks Unpaused concerts, these performances have mainly taken place at Brooks’ and Urban’s respective homes or nearby studios.
Garth Brooks and his wife Trisha Yearwood have put on multiple concerts since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic that has forced people to quarantine in order to slow the spread of the virus. Brooks’ Facebook page is the best place to rewatch the concert series, which often featured Brooks and Yearwood taking requests from viewers, making each concert unique and intimate. In fact, people were such fans of the concerts, one of the shows crashed Facebook Live because so many people were watching.
Australian country crooner Keith Urban puts on his shows from the recording space in his basement. One of the most acclaimed actresses of all time, his wife Nicole Kidman, plays assistant and occasional backup dancer for his performances. The two seem like they’re having a great time together and enjoying the music, which makes each mini-concert feel infinitely rewatchable. Urban’s concerts have been uploaded to both his YouTube page and his Instagram page as part of his Urban Underground series, which gives fans plenty of options to choose from.
Social media hasn’t been the only venue for these virtual concerts. In April, Travis Scott teamed up with video game giant Fortnite for an immersive musical experience. Pairing trippy visuals with Scott’s futuristic sound created one of the most surreal, and successful, Fortnite events since the game featured a live concert by Marshmello in 2019. Scott’s concert can be viewed in its entirety via YouTube.
Nostalgia-Inducing Table Reads And Reunions
Not every virtual event has to be a concert. Several of the year’s best digital events have been table reads for fan-favorite movies, such as Fast Times At Ridgemont High and The Goonies. Not all the original actors from those films were available to attend, but the organizers managed to fit in some big-name replacements.
Fast Times At Ridgemont High
The star of the raunchy 80’s comedy, Sean Penn, was the one who pulled all the strings to make one of the biggest virtual events of the spring happen. He got the likes of Julia Roberts, Brad Pitt, Jennifer Aniston, and Matthew McConaughey together to voice the characters, resulting in some…interesting chemistry between exes Pitt and Aniston during a particularly steamy scene. The entire table read is available on YouTube and is definitely worth a viewing.
Reunited Apart – The Goonies
Josh Gad’s YouTube series Reunited Apart reunited some of the most beloved movie cast, which resulted in many behind-the-scenes secrets being spilled. The best part of the series came early on, with Gad managing to reunite every living cast member from the 80’s cult classic The Goonies. Though the series has since come to an end, the episodes are still available to rewatch on Gad’s YouTube page.
Some Good News – The Office/Hamilton
John Krasinski’s YouTube show Some Good News might not be adding new episodes anymore, but the short-lived series still provided plenty of rewatch value throughout its run. One of the best moments on the show came when Krasinski’s The Office castmate Steve Carell made a virtual appearance on the show and gave a brief interview. Another fan favorite moment came when Krasinski surprised a few Hamilton fans with a virtual meet-and-greet with stars from the hit musical, including Lin-Manuel Miranda, Daveed Diggs, Anthony Ramos, and Jonathan Groff.
Miley Cyrus – Bright Minded
Though there haven’t been any new episodes since April, Miley Cyrus’ InstagramLive series Bright Minded was indeed a bright spot during an otherwise dark time. Cyrus welcomed guests like Reese Witherspoon, Trixie Mattel, Ellen DeGeneres, and Demi Lovato to chat about both current events and personal matters. Her episode about self-care was possibly Cyrus’ best episode, as it allowed fans an intimate peek into the singer’s own self-care routines.
There have been so many entertaining things to watch online, but live entertainment can’t be replaced. Perhaps that’s why so many of the events listed above have had such a huge impact on their audiences. It’s always nice to watch something new, but there’s definitely something amazing about being able to rewatch live entertainment whenever the mood strikes.