Eric Clapton and Van Morrison have shared a new single that critiques the lockdowns due to COVID-19. The new single, “Stand and Deliver” finds the pair calling those who follow lockdown procedures “slaves” and claiming the lockdowns to be fascist.
The instrumentals of the track fuse Morrison and Clapton’s classic sounds, while the lyrics ask “Do you want to be a free man/Or do you want to be a slave/Do you want to wear these chains/Until you’re lying in the grave.” The single goes on to call for live shows to be reopened, saying “Is this a sovereign nation/Or a police state?”
“Stand and Deliver” follows Morrison’s other anti-lockdown singles, “Born To Be Free,” “No More Lockdowns” and “As I Walked Out.” Morrison requested in August that venues be re-opened to full capacity, commenting that the current lockdowns were killing the live events and music industry.
COVID-19 has continued to spread throughout both the United States and Europe, with many places re-entering stricter lockdowns during the holidays. Worldwide, 1.68 million people have died due to the pandemic, and the United States has seen 315,000 deaths. Los Angeles became a COVID-19 hotspot following Thanksgiving, with the entirety of Southern California reporting 0 percent ICU capacity.
The United Kingdom has not experienced as many deaths as the United States, with 1.98 million ages and 66,541 deaths. In contrast, the state of California has 1.83 million cases, with 22,509 deaths.
The pandemic has caused the concert industry to lose $30 billion this year due to canceled tours and festivals. Numerous music artists have been forced to cancel shows repeatedly throughout the pandemic, with dates first being moved to the fall, then to the spring of 2021, then again to fall 2021. The first COVID vaccines have started being handed out, however it is expected that it will be several more months until everyone will have access to the vaccine.