Why you (yes you!) need to go down the pub right now!
Blog by UK Gigs Online under Live
If you’re reading this, then I should think you have some involvement or at least a vague interest in unsigned music. With that established, it doesn’t matter if you’re a singer, producer, manager, promoter, roadie, groupie or just a good old music fan, you really need to take note of what the Live Music Act is all about.
Now, I am sure that you are all up-to-date on your acts of parliament (the ones that are yet to be u-turned anyway). But for the few of you lovely people who don’t know, the Live Music Act 2012 allows, as of 1st October 2013, venues with a capacity of under 200 people to host live amplified music without the need for a licence from their local council.
Sounds great right? Sounds freaking awesome! This act will allow 13,000 more venues up and down the country to host live music along with making it easier for a further 20,400 already doing a stellar job. So, that’s 33,400 venues affected by this act! Now that could provide thousands of unsigned acts with a whole host of new fans to play too, new places to get drunk and new groupies, too. Well…
Then I read another statistic: in September, research was commissioned by UK Music to find out what effect the new act would have on venues around the country. Of the venues who responded to their questionnaire, only 22% were even aware of the Live Music Act. That’s a startling statistic!
So you can probably see where I am going with this. I would encourage – no, I demand - you stop what you are doing right now and head directly to your local pub or venue armed with a copy of the Live Music Act 2012 (don’t worry, here’s a link) and endlessly barrage the landlord (drinking optional, but highly recommended) with all the details about the act and how wonderful it will make his fine establishment.
Now of course there may be some barriers to this operation so below I have answered some common scenarios you may encounter as part of your heroic quest in.....
The “going to the pub or venue with a capacity of under 200 people to explain an act of parliament” survival guide!
“My printer ran out of ink”
The work place is a fantastic source of free printing. The fact you are printing out an act of parliament will almost always be seen as work related and may even get you a promotion! If you are unfortunate enough to not have a job, try Dave next door, he’s always printing things.
“But I’m at work right now”
This is far more important than any job! It’s all about being assertive. Find yourself an important looking folder (leather bound preferably), get up and start walking towards the door. Shoulders back, head high and at a good pace. This alone should stop almost anyone from raising suspicion. But make sure you have a good excuse prepared just in case. Something involving regulations, parity, accounts or clearing up the mess caused by Jenkins from marketing, that sort of thing should cover you. Remember, the Live Music Act needs you!
“The landlord isn’t there/isn’t playing ball”
Remember this may not be a short fight. You may need to wait for him/her to come back from walking the dog or drinking at that better pub round the corner so be prepared to drink 6,7 maybe even 10 pints before having your chance to pitch to him/her. If they’re being difficult, try saying please.
“But I’m terrible at explaining acts of parliament to people”
Props are your friend! Consider writing a song about the act to sing to the landlord, or maybe even stage a small play in the pub to get your point across.
Hopefully this will inspire some of you to get in touch with your local venues and make sure they are as aware of this new legislation as you are. Speaking of awareness *shameless plug warning* why not also tell them about my new website UK Gigs Online. We’re here to help promote the unsigned scene in the UK and combined with this wondrous act of parliament I reckon between us all (and several pints) we can really grow this fantastic industry!
*I take no responsibility for any loss of job, or any injury sustained through any attempts made to spread awareness of the Live Music Act 2012 or anything else to do with this article.
About the author
Nic Taylor is the Director of UK Gigs Online a new ticketing and promotion website for gigs in the UK. Launched in September 2012, UK Gigs Online is a specialist platform for the promotion and sale of tickets to smaller gigs and tours around the UK. The site is designed to increase the exposure of artists, promoters and venues involved in each event as well as supply information and statistics before and after an event which no other platform can provide. See www.ukgigsonline.com/howitworks.aspx for more information.
live music act, uk gigs online, live music, unsigned bands, unsigned musicians, unsigned artists, unsigned gigs