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Okay Kenedi’s next month was all set. The local band had performances planned at venues around the area, but the music scene, like so much of American life right now, has been disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic. Many of their paid gigs have been canceled as businesses seek to comply with social distancing guidelines.
That isn’t stopping Okay Kenedi. The music must go on, and so it will for the Christian indie-pop rock trio in a virtual concert that the band is hosting Friday, March 27, at 7 p.m.
With many people stuck in their homes, Okay Kennedy’s Savannah-based label, Little Bird Big Sound, encouraged the band to try live streaming a concert and use a “virtual tip jar” to offset some of the loss from their canceled gigs.
The more Okay Kenedi members thought about their live-streamed concert, the more they saw it as a tool to support local businesses hurting from the effects of the pandemic.
“We have strong relationships with local business owners,” said Kenedi Griffis, the band’s vocalist and guitar player. “We saw a need left by the economic impact of the virus.”
That virtual tip jar will serve a different purpose now: all those who donate to it will be entered into a raffle for a chance to win prizes from two local coffee shops, Because Coffee and Community Cup, while all proceeds from the virtual tip jar will be donated to Meals by Grace, a nonprofit that provides food assistance to those in need.
It’s a win-win for the band: they get to perform and entertain, while also giving back to the community.
“We have been strongly considering how we can help our community during this time and demonstrate what it looks like to be the church when we aren’t able to go to church,” Griffis said. “For us, ‘Okay Kenedi: Live from Quarantine” is what that looks like.”