Reno Singer-Songwriter Nick Eng Turns to Livestreaming during Coronavirus

Livestreaming can be a daunting and difficult task for some but as Tamara Snight reports it hasn’t stopped local musician Nick Eng from interacting with his followers. Additional social media reporting by Krista Abacan.

Musicians and artists around the world, such as Nick Eng in Reno, are switching to online live performances due to cancellations and other obstacles presented by COVID-19.

Virtual Pop-Rock Shows: The Experience

On Friday evening, Eng played his second-ever livestream show and took the stage looking properly ready to entertain an audience of quarantiners, isolators and music lovers. In a pre-show interview, he mentioned the feedback from the first show was positive aside from a few technical difficulties.

“It’s a brief hello over pixels,” said Eng.

Eng, 23, has a large Gen X following creating a sense of nostalgia during his performances. Influenced by 1960s PopRock, Brit-Pop and Garage-Rock, Eng showcases a style predating his own age. Photo provided with permission by Kellie Sasso.

Original Songs and Requests

Eng sang originals and took requests from the comment section during Friday’s livestream show.

“I love your style! Sounding amazing Nick,” said one Facebook user. “We are loving the home concert! Thanks for spreading the joy! Sounds clear,” said another.

Eng said he goes into his performances with ‘band mentality’ even while performing solo. He uses livestream to interact with online communities and provides a personalized experience for people who are missing social gatherings.

In more normal times, Eng frequently performs with four bandmates whom he describes as good friends. Photography provided with permission by Kellie Sasso.

You Just Gotta’ Roll With It

Uncertain times await artists as funds continue to tighten — Eng’s spring schedule was canceled leaving him questioning when this shutdown phase will all end and what summer will be like. He expressed gratitude for his family whom he’s currently living with, as many people are currently struggling to secure housing after being displaced or laid-off from work.

“It’s given me the chance to focus more on writing and recording some new stuff…it’s kind of like a double-edge sword, you have to find the silver lining in it,” said Eng.

Eng doesn’t wish to oversaturate livestream networks though as he says he is content writing new material and doing other work that brings income.

Eng graduated from UNR in May of 2019 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and has recently done some freelance work for an online digital privacy website. He explained Virtual Private Networks (VPN) can experience spikes with more people working from home.

Eng said he expects his next livestream show to be sometime in late April. In the meantime, he said he will continue to write and record new material.

Virtual Tip Jars

The age of technology allows people to electronically tip musicians during livestream on platforms like Venmo, GoFundMe and PayPal. Eng started selling merchandise 50 percent off to show support to his fans stuck at home.

“Thank you for your support from a distance,” said Eng.

Reporting by Tamara Snight with additional social media reporting by Krista Abacan

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