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Startup aims to help musicians stay afloat during the pandemic

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WATCH ABOVE: COVID-19 has taken its toll on numerous industries including the arts with many struggling to stay afloat. Two musicians have found a way for them and others to safely continue honing their craft while giving people a customized performance at the same time. Miranda Anthistle has the details – Dec 28, 2020

Live music performances are one of the many causalities of the COVID-19 pandemic, leaving numerous artists without a creative channel.

For married musicians Ellen and Omayya Atout, the time spent at home led them to launch a new platform for people to still be able to create music for others.

“Songlorious is about spreading music and love through music, and the love that people have for music. It’s also about the ability to support musicians while they actually hone their craft,” said co-founder Omayya.

Songlorious connects people with musicians to create a tailor-made song for any occasion. There are different genres to choose from and the entire process is done remotely.

Read more: Toronto residents turning to music for comfort during pandemic

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Roughly 100 musicians from across the globe are on the roster, including Carol Mak who lives in Toronto.

“The pandemic has been a huge blow to our community,” said Mak whose music career was put on hold with all live gigs cancelled.“[Songlorious] makes me feel secure… it’s a good opportunity to practice writing — writing for other people, writing for very specific cases and instances — and really being creative in a productive way.”

Mak has written more than a dozen personalized songs for others since becoming one of the first musicians to be part of the Songlorious roster.

The projects range from podcast themes to news station jingles. She points to a song request by someone looking to save their marriage as the most challenging one to date.

Read more: COVID-19 taking heavy toll on B.C.’s working musicians

Liz Manofsky was the recipient of a Songlorious song. Her boyfriend had it made to celebrate their first anniversary.

“I’m so proud he chose to support it,” said Manofsky. “I personally know friends who are musicians struggling right now so I was very happy to be a part of [Songlorious] and happy he chose it as a gift… my heart melted.”
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It’s this kind of reaction artists like Mak love seeing their songs elicit.

“Oftentimes music and other arts are overlooked as essential to functioning society, but I think this just illustrates how much joy art can really bring people,” said Mak.

For the Atout’s, they say Songlorious now receives up to 50 song orders a day and since the service started back in the summer, it’s put tens of thousands of dollars back into musicians’ pockets.

“To be able to give them an avenue to make money while practicing their craft of music — they’ve been loving it and we feel really good that we can provide something like that,” said Omayya. “The gift of music working both ways during a difficult time.”

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