Increasing vaccinated musicians test positive for COVID-19


New Jersey rocker Jon Bon Jovi and Canadian singer Bryan Adams canceled separate appearances on Saturday night after testing positive for COVID-19. They join a number of artists who have contracted the virus despite vaccination.

“Jon is fully vaccinated and feeling fine,” wrote Bon Jovi’s publicist in a statement. The musician was scheduled to perform at a three-night “Halloween weekend getaway” at the Loews on Florida’s South Beach, which would have included an acoustic storyteller performance, a Q&A and one-on-one photo opportunities for fans.

Concertgoers, who were asked to provide proof of vaccination or a negative test result, had already filed into the venue when the announcement was made, according to 7News Miami. There is no word whether concertgoers will be refunded; the touring company Runaway Tours has not responded to a request for comment.

Adams was slated to perform a Tina Turner tribute at Saturday night’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction but canceled his appearance after contracting COVID-19. Adams’ representative confirmed that he is fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and is showing no symptoms. Country star Keith Urban filled in at the last minute.

With the spring arrival of COVID-19 vaccines, the live music industry bounced back this summer, giving way to a rebirth of venues long shuttered by the pandemic. But studies have shown that COVID-19 vaccines, including those manufactured by Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson, have waned in efficacy over time, and as more breakthrough cases occur, the music industry is experimenting with solutions to keep up the momentum and maintain the safety of artists and workers on tour.

System of a Down were scheduled to perform Oct. 22 and 23 with Korn, Helmet and Russian Circles at Banc of California Stadium until frontman Serj Tankian announced he had contracted a breakthrough case. The shows were postponed to Feb. 4 and 5, with a pledge that tickets to the October shows will be honored.

English hitmaker Ed Sheeran was scheduled to perform Nov. 6 on “Saturday Night Live” — but the singer announced on Instagram last week that he will do only virtual performances and interviews after testing positive for COVID-19. It has not yet been determined whether he will appear remotely on “SNL.” Page Six has reported that “SNL” is seeking a replacement.

Following FDA approval, booster shots have become increasingly available to the public, albeit gradually. In California, all vaccinated adults over 65, or those with underlying health conditions, are urged to get booster shots. Eligibility has been expanded to any adults who live or work in settings at higher risk for coronavirus exposure, such as employees of hospitals, schools and grocery stores. Those who care for high-risk individuals are also eligible.

However, the limited eligibility poses a challenge for vaccinated adults who don’t meet such qualifications. Los Angeles County has mandated proof of vaccination or a negative test result to enter public indoor spaces such as restaurants, salons and concert venues.

In light of the Delta variant that triggered an uptick in COVID-19 cases this summer, local music venues like Troubador and Zebulon adopted this policy before the county-wide mandate. But as young concertgoers wait on booster shots, the safety of live music events hangs in the balance.

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