This time every year, the same thing happens. Glasgow’s parks are turned into makeshift concert arenas for a raft of outdoor summer gigs, which are just as likely to take place under a dark rain cloud as they are the remnants of a Scottish summer.

An army of neon-clad teenagers will swarm the city, armed with supermarket own brand spirits decanted into water bottles. Those of us too old for that will whinge about the price of an on-site pint.

That’s festival season. At least it would be if it wasn’t for ... well, you know what.

But, while I’m left staring wistfully at a ticket stub from The Cure gig this time last year, last night marked the first major socially distanced gig. Part PR stunt, part road test of socially distanced live entertainment, songwriter Sam Fender took to the stage in Newcastle. It looked like no outdoor gig I’ve ever seen.

Pre-coronavirus, Gosforth Park would have crammed in 45,000 people. Last night it held just 2,500, spaced 2m apart on individual viewing platforms which hold a maximum of five people.

HeraldScotland: A crowd of 2,500 concert-goers were spread across 500 individual enclosures (Photo: PA)A crowd of 2,500 concert-goers were spread across 500 individual enclosures (Photo: PA)

Tickets for the gig sold out in minutes and I doubt it was just for the novelty. People miss live music and no online stream can even begin to account for the nights out that this pandemic has taken.

Because I am convinced a good gig is the closest thing we have to real-life magic. And, when you’re standing in the middle of 50,000 people singing along to the same song, I think most people would agree.

I never thought I would yearn for being crammed up against sweaty strangers in a muddy field, but here we are.

The music industry has been frank about its future while Covid-19 remains with. Reduced capacity would bring venues to their knees. Ticket price increases would be unavoidable. Meanwhile thousands, both on and off stage, are out of work. It looks really bleak.

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And when people run pilots like this, I find it hard to scoff. There are no easy answers, no obvious solutions, to keep people safe while keeping everything afloat. We need people to try.

But, selfishly, I eye them wearily. Because I don’t want a viewing platform. I want to laugh at the guy who’s had a few too many and wants to be everybody’s pal without worrying if he’s 2m away.

Next year, if we’re back to standing shoulder to shoulder watching some band play at Bellahouston Park, one thing is for sure: I won’t be complaining about the price of a pint. I’ll be singing along and thanking my lucky stars.