A conversation with LEFTO​

In the light of current affairs, we were wondering how people, businesses, companies, entertainers and so on react to the Covid crisis. For example: is it all darkness and doom or are there new initiatives on the rise that will create new jobs and or opportunities due to this pandemic? We reached out to some familiar folks in our contact lists. First up: LEFTO. This guy hardly needs any introduction in Brussels. And for those living outside of the capital, the name probably rings a bell – if you’re into good music, that is. We thought he might clear up a thing or two on how it’s like for DJs and people in the music industry during these strange times.

What will the impact on nightlife and events look like according to you? 

“I hope there won’t be too much of an impact in the long run. A lot of concerts and events were able to reschedule, but obviously the cultural sector is losing a lot of money and funds – going from DJ to promotor, venues, P.A. firms to bars and clubs. It wil take some time, but I’m convinced that people will really want to go outside and party when it’s all over. You see, our current situation is comparable with living in a cage. And have you ever seen footage of a caged animal being set free?”

In your opinion: is there a future for the ‘digitalisation of culture’? 

“Culture is something that brings people together, provokes conversations, shares emotions, … Digitising culture might create a place within culture itself, as a tool – for example. However, if we would actually completely digitise culture, culture would die a silent death: culture needs to live, it needs to be in the streets, and it should stay like that. It should convince people to get out of their homes, rather than keep them locked inside.

Culture needs to live, it needs to be in the streets, and it should stay like that.

Are there measures the government put in place that will have a lasting effect on the cultural sector? 

“The current state is that everything is down and out, and we’ll have to wait and see how things will go. There’s no telling what the future will bring in the cultural sector, so there’s hardly anything that’s carved in stone. Nonetheless, I can come up with a couple of suggestions for the future when events like these today would occur. More financial aid, for instance: every artist pays 50% of his income to taxes, but what’s there in return for situations like the Corona crisis? Might be something ‘they’ need to look in to.” 

Fast forward to a post-Corona age: how will the public have altered or adjusted itself towards cultural events (including concerts, club nights, …)?

“I think these things will take some time. In the beginning, people will still be a bit paranoid and will keep a certain distance – especially indoors. But after a while everything will get back to normal.” 

How is the future looking? 

“Honestly, it’s a mystery. This crisis is a huge reality check for everyone, going from politicians to the man in the streets. And the reality of the matter is: nobody knows how tomorrow is going to be. Our societies are vulnerable, and I think there’s more that meets the eye. I fear there’s a huge political game being played during this pandemic, east and west armwrestling on the table. It might even determine our future…”

> Stay in the loop. Check out LEFTO’s mixtapes here.