There are fears the coronavirus could put an end to these beloved entertainment spaces, which have been closed since the shelter-in-place began in March.
On Wednesday, ABC7 News met at Joel Nelson's Los Gatos home. He and his band were streaming their jam sessions over social media.
RELATED: Bay Area musician Andrew St. James plays drive-by concerts during COVID-19 pandemic
This scene has become a weekly norm for Nelson, the owner of The Catalyst in Santa Cruz. "It started with me on piano, and then I brought a drummer," he explained. "And tonight I brought a full band."
All musicians were getting down on Nelson's home deck. This brought a brief distraction from reality.
According to a recent survey by the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA), 90% of owners, promoters and bookers said they'll have to close permanently within the next few months if they don't get federal aid.
"We did get a little assistance from the PPP loan," Nelson shared with ABC7 News. "But of course, for people like us who can't open, it's really hard for us to use that money because we don't have anything for our employees to do."
RELATED: Statistics show COVID-19's stunning impact on the Bay Area after 6 months of sheltering in place
He continued, "That money is helping us pay rent. We're still paying rent keep The Catalyst open. We're doing our best to do everything to keep it open."
It's the reason North Bay Congressman Mike Thompson sponsored two bills, vital to these venues -- the Save Our Stages Act and the RESTART Act.
"If these venues don't get the funding needed, it could be catastrophic for the music industry and the entertainment industry as a whole," Joanne Desmond said.
Desmond is the assistant business agent for IATSE Local 16. She explained the impacts reach far beyond just owners and musicians.
Desmond said the shutdown is hurting more than 2,000 Local 16 stagehand union members alone.
"I'll use an event like Outside Lands which Another Planet Entertainment does, which is quite a popular event in the Bay Area," she told ABC7 News. "We staff over 400 jobs from just Local 16 on that event alone."
She continued, "That is not including food vendors, beer vendors, t-shirt vendors, security, teamsters to unload drayage and freight. The people that travel with the band..."
Of course, people hope to still be employed once the pandemic is over.
"I canceled probably, at this point, maybe over 100 events that were scheduled for 2020," Nelson said.
"I feel so sorry for my employees. Luckily, there is unemployment. The extra $600, that helped them tremendously," he continued. "When that ended, it really become a problem for a lot of my employees."
Desmond added, "The extra $600 was a lifeline, and that's gone now. And we're just not seeing any movement by the Senate to help the workers out."
Nelson said The Catalyst employees more than 60 people, including bouncers, bartenders, cleaners and more.
"There's so much to make it happen. All the booking people, people who run the club, so there's a whole army that it takes to keep it going."
Nelson anticipates The Catalyst will make it out of the pandemic, but added, "For other smaller clubs, it's going to be hard. I hear a lot of clubs are not able to make it because they can't pay the rent with no income."
"We don't expect any work - if we're lucky - until mid-2021," Desmond said. "Depending on vaccines and whatever else happens. And if you lose these venues, if these venues are forced to be shuttered, you lose your entertainment outlet. Music and entertainment is what sustains us as people."
Desmond also pointed to impacts sustained by surrounding businesses.
"These venues are closed. They still have to pay PG&E to keep the lights on, they still have to pay for insurance. They have to keep the skeletal staff, if they're fortunate. And there is zero revenue coming in," she said. "None of the surrounding businesses are able to thrive from that, too. All the restaurants, bars, parking lot attendants, they're all hurting too. So it's a huge trickle-down effect."
Both Nelson and Desmond are urging people to encourage lawmakers to step up and support both bills.
"Encourage those representatives to support the Restart Act and the Save Our Stages Act. That's pivotal," Desmond shared. "And you also can't look at this in a vacuum. It's not just like one guy getting a handout, it's communities you are saving."
ABC7 News has reached out to North Bay Congressman Mike Thompson's office for comment, but have not heard back.
ABC7 News also reached out to Grateful Dead co-founder Bob Weir, as he and Thompson joined Desmond and others during a Tuesday virtual press conference on the subject. Weir has not responded for comment.
For more information about Save Our Stages and for help contacting your lawmakers, visit this page.
If you have a question or comment about the coronavirus pandemic, submit yours via the form below or here.Get the latest news, information and videos about the novel coronavirus pandemic hereRELATED STORIES & VIDEOS:
- COVID-19 Help: Comprehensive list of resources, information
- Watch list: Counties where COVID-19 is getting worse
- MAP: Everything that's open, forced to close in Bay Area
- Everything to know about CA's confusing reopening plan, summer shutdown and what comes next
- From salons to dinner parties:Experts rate the risk of 12 activities
- Coronavirus origin: Where did COVID-19 come from?
- Life after COVID-19: Here's what restaurants, gyms will look like
- What is a COVID-19 genetic, antigen and antibody test?
- What will it take to get aCOVID-19 vaccine and how will it be made?
- What does COVID-19 do to your body and why does it spread so easily?
- Here's how shelter in place, stay at home orders can slow spread of COVID-19
- Coronavirus Timeline: Tracking major moments of COVID-19 pandemic in San Francisco Bay Area
- Experts compare face shield vs. face mask effectiveness
- COVID-19Diaries: Personal stories of Bay Area residents during novel coronavirus pandemic
- Coronavirus Doctor's Note: Dr. Alok Patel gives his insight into COVID-19 pandemic