Veteran prog rock band Marillion has asked fans to pitch in and help create a financial safety net to cover against the band having to cancel its forthcoming tour due to Covid-19 related issues.
In a statement, the band said the initiative was a result of not being able to buy pandemic related cancelation insurance ahead of its UK tour, which commences at Hull’s City Hall on 14 November.
Marillion said it had already invested more than £150,000 in preparations for the 10-date The Light at The End Of The Tunnel tour but risks losing it all if one of the band is forced to isolate with Covid-19.
“The band has not played live since the pandemic began, and to lose such a huge amount of money would be absolutely devastating,” said the band’s manager Lucy Jordache. “We tried to get the tour insured but it has proved impossible. No companies want to take the risk.”
As a result, Marillion has called on its worldwide fanbase to collectively become its insurers for the upcoming tour.
Jordache said, “We’re asking our fans to pledge money that will be held in escrow and if it all goes Covid-free it will be returned to them at the end of the tour. But if we do have to cancel, then their money will be used to pay the band’s unavoidable expenses.”
The band said that regardless of whether the money is used, the initiative will see contributors receive benefits ranging from having their name in a tour programme, or a free download of a gig, to a group chat or a meeting with the band via Zoom. They will also be entered into a raffle with prizes including handwritten lyrics, guitar plectrums and personal shout-outs at concerts.
Marillion has a history of conducting successful crowdfunding campaigns. In 1997, it raised $60,000 from fans to help underwrite its US tour.