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Repoman 01-07-2020 12:31

Let the Music Play Campaign Thursday 2nd July
Hopefully you can help!

I work in live music running a charity that operates two big venues and the C19 crisis has hit us really hard. All our income has stopped and we are in real danger of going under. This is replicated across the sector in venues big and small, and the supply chain that makes gigs happen: artists, promoters, agents, crews, caterers, bus drivers, hotels, merch sellers, bar staff and so on. Hundreds of thousands of jobs are at risk from a sector that contributes billions to the economy.

The live sector doesn't "deserve" special treatment but it is unique in that it simply cannot function while social distancing is in place in any form. Until those restrictions lift, the sector, like theatre, is fundamentally broken. Virtual gigs, drive in gigs, socially distanced gigs are all a distraction, don't pretend this is the new normal.

The government response has been poor. I have been party to the discussion s with DCMS and they have been frankly more preoccupied with drawing up guidelines for how far apart musicians should sit to lower transmissions than the real problem. In effect they have been busy writing guides to socially distanced deckchair re-arrangement while the Titanic sinks.

The real issue which is what financial support does the sector need to survive, and what track and trace, screening or other technologies could be accelerated and applied to allow live music to resume at full capacity.

On Thursday 2nd July there will be a major PR campaign on social to accompany a letter to Oliver Dowden MP the minister at DCMS. This letter is signed by thousands of high profile musicians, venues and names from the sector. It is the most concentrated lobbying campaign to date.

#letthemusicplay asks bands and fans to tweet a picture of the last gig that they played or went to pre-lockdown. It would be great if members of this community could get behind it.


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