Days of Rona: Scott Harrington of Salt of the Earth Records & New England Stoner and Doom Fest

The statistics of COVID-19 change with every news cycle, and with growing numbers, stay-at-home isolation and a near-universal disruption to society on a global scale, it is ever more important to consider the human aspect of this coronavirus. Amid the sad surrealism of living through social distancing, quarantines and bans on gatherings of groups of any size, creative professionals — artists, musicians, promoters, club owners, techs, producers, and more — are seeing an effect like nothing witnessed in the last century, and as humanity as a whole deals with this calamity, some perspective on who, what, where, when and how we’re all getting through is a needed reminder of why we’re doing so in the first place.

Thus, Days of Rona, in some attempt to help document the state of things as they are now, both so help can be asked for and given where needed, and so that when this is over it can be remembered.

Thanks to all who participate. To read all the Days of Rona coverage, click here. — JJ Koczan


Days of Rona: Scott Harrington of Salt of the Earth Records (Colchester, Connecticut)

How are you dealing with this crisis? Have you had to rework plans at all? How is everyone’s health so far?

I own Salt Of The Earth Records & 313 INC Artist Management, and I am a co-conspirator of The New England Stoner and Doom Festival.

The label side of things we have been busy because we do a good amount of mailorder, and people have been buying music and other things to help entertain themselves while staying in… We just had the new Thunderbird Divine EP, The Hand of Man, come out this week, and we have been using our YouTube channel to promote the release and hopefully give fans an entertaining look behind the scenes. Something visual to go along with the music side.

As far as the crisis having an impact on plans, it definitely has. Today we had to announce that New England Stoner and Doom Festival is being postponed till next year (May 14-16, 2021). The good news is that it appears all of the bands are on board.

We also had a really big European tour that was going to be announced this week, that we have postponed till next February. As well as we had a huge concert event “Friday The 313th Oddities Bazaar” scheduled for March 13, that we canceled to be on the safe side. It was before the quarantine and at the moment when we canceled it, we wondered if we were going overboard, but in hindsight I feel we 100 percent did the right thing.

People need to stay home.

What are the quarantine/isolation rules where you are?

We are based in Colchester Connecticut, a suburb of Hartford. So we are kind of in the middle of CT.

Our town and surrounding towns are quarantined except for essential workers.

My family has been in self-quarantine since March 12. We are taking this extremely seriously.

My son-in-law works for UPS as a driver. He is an essential worker, and I am proud as all hell of him. He is a major part of bringing some sort of normalcy to a lot of people. And he is extremely careful. Who would have thought a month ago that an Amazon order containing cereal, toothpaste and peanut butter would have made me happier then even a package with some killer records in it? It’s crazy times no doubt.

How have you seen the virus affecting the community around you and in music?

The virus’s effect has been monumentally huge on my local community as well as our global music community. There are so many tattoo shops, record stores, recording studios, venues, bars, merchandise printers, vinyl and CD manufacturers that have been forced to close for who knows how long. It’s a huge petrifying sacrifice on their parts. And I truly thank them with my all of my heart For doing the right thing, even though it’s not easy at all.

I feel like the music community has really come together to support each other and others around us. I see lots of people buying bands music and merch online… PLEASE KEEP DOING THIS! Every single sale can make a big difference.

What is the one thing you want people to know about your situation, either as a band, or personally, or anything?

I want each and every person reading this to know all hope is not lost. We are being forced to show our resiliency and we are being reminded of the things that are really important. Family, friends and our health. I’m going to sound like a hippie here, but in my family we have raised (and are still raising) our kids by a simple creed: Be a good human.

If someone needs help, and you can help them… do it.

And Even through this chaos I count myself lucky. I have my wife and my kids and this huge global metal family that I am part of. I really appreciate all of the artists that we have the honor of working with. As well as all of the awesome metal fans we get to bring the heavy to.

Thank you. Each of you.

Please be safe. Please be well.

Be good humans.

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