While concert attendance continues to grow, UK grassroots venues are struggling with rising business rates and noise restrictions, reveals the first-of-its-kind census
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The world's first national music census, also surveying artists and audiences, is calling for the industry to help build a "complete picture" of the UK's live music biz
By IQ on 04 May 2017
British promoters and venues have until the end of May to take part in the inaugural UK Live Music Census, the first national music census in the world.
Commissioned by Live Music Exchange, the research project led by academics from the Universities of Edinburgh, Glasgow and Newcastle, and backed by UK Music, Music Venue Trust and the Musicians’ Union, the census aims to build a “complete picture of live music activity around the country” by surveying both artists and audiences, and those who make the shows happen behind the scenes.
Sample questions for the latter group of surveyees include: “Do you think that you will be promoting more or fewer live music events three years from now, and why?”, “What do you think are the main contributions that live music makes to your local area?” and “What could the government (local, national and/or UK) do, if anything, to improve the live music scene?”.
“The much-needed data collected by UK Live Music Census will help us protect live music going into the future”
“We know that live music is an immense economic and cultural asset, driving everything from tourism to civic pride, and that live music also has huge cultural and social value, whether it be a place for spending time with friends and family or even to improve health and well-being,” explains a spokesperson for the UK Live Music Census team. “However, at present, still not enough is known about it, and much of what we do know is anecdotal rather than presented in the ‘numbers and narratives’ manner to which politicians and other key decision-makers respond.
“This, then, is one of the drivers behind the UK Live Music Census, the world’s first national music census; a Springwatch for live music, if you will. As Lord Clement Jones, a driving force behind changes to live music legislation in the UK, notes: ‘Data about the sector has so far been relatively scarce and mostly anecdotal, and so the much-needed data collected by UK Live Music Census will help us protect live music going into the future.'”
There are separate surveys for venues and promoters, both open until 31 May (and if the the incentive to help safeguard the future of the industry isn’t enough, one respondent will win an iPad!). Find both at uklivemusiccensus.org.
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