The Musicians Union have launched a Live Music Kit containing both practical and creative advice for venues in the run up to the launch of the Live Music Act on October 1 2012.
The pack outlines the terms of the Act, explaining how a live music programme can enhance businesses with a higher public profile, vibrant venue atmosphere and an increase in heads through the door and revenue.
There’s also advice on the legislative, practical and creative elements involved in hosting live music, and features a range of resources, including performance contracts, health and safety issues, promotional advice and useful contacts.
We reported on the Live Music Act back in March when it officially became UK law. Its launch in October will make venues up and down the country exempt from the Licensing Act when hosting live music events for audiences of fewer than 200 people.
It’s hoped that this will help energise and promote grass roots music, something which is vital for the long-term health of the UK music industry. At present the majority of live revenue is generated by established stadium filling artists – so-called heritage acts such as The Rolling Stones – who will not be easy to replace without a fertile and active hotbed of new talent.
Speaking about the launch of the new help kit, John Smith, General Secretary of the MU talked about the potential positives of the Act and its impact of performers and live music organisers:
“The implementation of the Live Music Act signifies an exciting time for both venues and musicians, who can use the opportunity to work together to create a growing audience and profile, and long-term success.”
Although designed to help promoters and venue owners deliver the changes brought about by the Live Music Act, professional musicians and performers can also find a wealth of advice and information in the kit, something which Smith is keen to point out:
“At a time when many working musicians are struggling, and events such as the Olympics and Jubilee celebrations seem to have brought about only unpaid gigs, this exemption is great news for them because I am confident that it will bring about a real resurgence in live music in pubs and other small venues.
“Small venues are, after all, the places where most musicians start their careers and so promoting opportunities for live performance in small venues protects the career progression of musicians in the UK.”
The help kit is available now to download and view as a .pdf from the MU website. Printed copies are also available can be requested by contacting MU Research and Press Official Isabelle Gutierrez at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How is the health of your local live music scene? What would you like to see change to help live music, gigs and musicians near you?