Driift celebrates success with livestream concerts
UK-based virtual producer and promoter Driift is announcing a slate of ticketed livestream concerts after successful online events with Laura Marling, Lianne La Havas and Dermot Kennedy.
The company, founded by ATC Management’s Ric Salmon and Brian Message, trialled the pay-per-view livestream concerts with a performance from Laura Marling at the Union Chapel in London in June.
“Ticketed live streaming is currently a space that no one controls, and we believe there is a long-term and commercially viable business here. It’s incredibly exciting” says Salmon.
Capitalising on the success of Marling’s show, Driift has since produced livestream shows for Lianne La Havas at the Roundhouse and Dermot Kennedy at the Natural History Museum.
Kennedy’s livestream show, which took place last Thursday (30 June) and featured Normal People’s Paul Mescal, sold over 30,000 tickets worldwide and was broadcast live over four different time zones.
“It strikes me that this is just the beginning of an exciting opportunity for artists and their teams to create new art that many will choose to pay for,” says Message. “If we get this right, ticketed livestream productions, whether live shows or something not yet dreamt of, can comfortably sit alongside promotional videos, traditional live shows and other ways fans and artists relate.”
This is not a replacement for live, this is a coming of age for livestreaming
Now, with investment from shareholders Beggars Group, Driift is producing more high profile livestream shows including a one-off worldwide performance from Biffy Clyro on 15 August from an iconic Glasgow venue and a performance from Sleaford Mods at the 100 club on 12 September.
“We’ve felt for a long time that livestreaming has been undervalued,” says Ruth Barlow, director of live at Beggars Group.
“We’re excited about the creative and commercial opportunities for the business, the artists and their fans; who no longer have to be in a particular city at a particular time to experience unique live music events.
“This is not a replacement for live, this is a coming of age for livestreaming.”
Driift will oversee ticketing, production, licensing, rights management and digital marketing for the livestream concerts – allowing artists to rebuild live music into their release campaigns and overall strategies.
Having collaborated with live industry giants such as CAA, Dice, Universe/Ticketmaster, YouTube, Pulse Films and Jackshoot, Driift is expanding its offering outside of the UK, with a number of shows being set up in North America.
This article forms part of IQ’s Covid-19 resource centre – a knowledge hub of essential guidance and updating resources for uncertain times.
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The 100% Club: London venue gets full biz rates relief
Iconic London music venue the 100 Club has become the first venue in the country to receive full business rates relief, under a new scheme to protect grassroots venues, put forward by Westminster City Council.
The 100% relief from business rates – the tax levied on non-residential property in the UK – will save the 100 Club over £70,000 a year, according to charity the Music Venue Trust, after the measures come into place on 1 April 2020.
The move helps to secure the future of the venue, which has hosted the likes of the Rolling Stones, Oasis, the Sex Pistols and Louis Armstrong since opening in 1942.
The 100 Club has been on the brink of closure at least three times in the past decade, saved by efforts from Westminster Council, Paul McCartney, Converse, Fred Perry and MVT.
Under the plans, music venues in Westminster are eligible for full relief if they are primarily a grassroots music venue and appear on the Greater London Authority’s register as such; the organisation running the venue is not for profit; and the venue is the borough of Westminster, preferably in the area of Soho.
“This is a game-changing approach from a local authority in supporting grassroots music venues”
The news comes as the UK live music industry celebrates the government’s decision to cut business rates in half for all eligible small- and mid-sized grassroots venues, announced earlier this week. Venues had previously remained exempt from the rates relief granted to other small retailers, such as bars and restaurants.
“I’m thrilled the 100 Club has been granted this new business rates relief. It means we can continue to support the careers of the hundreds of artists who take to our stage each year,” comments venue owner Jeff Horton.
“This is a game-changing approach from a local authority in supporting grassroots music venues. I hope that other local authorities will adopt a similar forward thinking approach to support the music industry.”
“Grassroots music venues play a key role in London’s thriving nightlife,” says London’s night czar Amy Lamé. “That is why we’ve worked closely with The 100 Club and Westminster City Council to secure its future.”
The night czar, who was appointed in 2016 to protect London’s nightlife, adds that the news serves “as a great example of what can be done to support venues in our city.”