Some of the biggest bands in rock were the recipients of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans, which were part of the $2 trillion CARES act used to assist small businesses impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
Rolling Stone looked over recently released data from the Small Business Administration and Treasury Department and “identified more than 50 musicians and groups across all genres among the 660,000 recipients who were granted a loan for more than $150,000.”
Among those were the Eagles, Pearl Jam, Guns N’ Roses, Green Day, Disturbed, Tool, Nickelback, Imagine Dragons, Incubus, Slipknot, My Chemical Romance, Wilco, Weezer, Cheap Trick, Gary Clark Jr., Papa Roach and many more.
Since this news surfaced, there has been some criticism of these musicians receiving these PPP loans in lieu of other small businesses. However, these loans aren’t going directly to the musicians; the loans were for their various tour crew personnel who are currently out of work since touring is on hold.
Rolling Stone notes, “The loans are listed to the artists’ touring companies specifically, with the Eagles’ loan, for example, helping retain 50 jobs.”
Independent venues are also struggling, too. The National Independent Venue Association recently sent a letter to Congress that was signed by over 600 musicians and entertainers asking for federal assistance because, “90% of independent venues report that if the shutdown lasts six months and there’s no federal assistance, they will never reopen again.”