RIO GRANDE VALLEY, Texas (KVEO) — The halt on weddings and all large gatherings have left many without work. Musicians and vendors said they are struggling to stay afloat while risking their health.
Latin band “Ache de Barrio” projected 2020 was going to be their biggest year yet because they had every Wednesday to Sunday booked.
“Yeah and that changed as soon as the pandemic, it stopped us all on our tracks,” said Ruth Naomi from Ache De Barrio.
Having to cancel all their private events led the band to play at the island where they said although people are required to wear masks some forget to social distance.
“Before the pandemic you can get up on stage, sing with us play my congas and now nope not anymore but some people try to get on stage. Yeah you have to stop them before they get too close,” she added.
Edmundo Orta, Representative of Mariachi Xochipilli said they have played parties where no one is wearing a mask.
“Nobody is taking care of themselves,” said Orta.
He said although he fears getting sick, he has to keep working to pay bills and assures the band follows all safety protocols.
“We all want to work more because we don’t make enough to pay the rent,” Orta said.
Orta said musicians are struggling financially as bookings have dropped 40% since counties implemented a nightly curfew.
For vendors like Cantu’s Special Events, sales have dropped 99%.
“We were used to events of 500, 600, to one thousand people,” said owner Blanca Cantu.
She said the dip in business has been due to county orders prohibiting mass gatherings.
The three companies are hopeful more people will wear masks and social distance, allowing them to continue receiving the little bit of business they have left.