• Darrel Hull

Independent Music Needs Your Support

Lots of venues are back hosting live events again here in the UK, as I'm sure they are in other countries. However, many independent singers & bands are still struggling to make ends meet. Lots of them live gig to gig and have been left without earnings since the beginning of the lockdown last year, others lucky enough to hold savings have very little, if anything left.

With this in mind, I urge you, wherever you are in the world, support your local artists & music scenes.

Before you ask, no I'm not going round with my hat asking for handouts.. please read on..

Independent, unsigned artists offer so much, I'm sure all reading this will have missed the atmosphere of a live gig during the lockdown. Live music brings people together, lifts hearts & brings so much pleasure, I could go on but I'm sure you understand my meaning, so please don't let it die out!!!

Another factor that has an undue effect on the industry is the music for free syndrome..where going to see a singer/band down the pub at no cost is taken for granted.

However, entertainers have to put food on the table, pay bills, they put in hours of work before they go on stage, something those outside the industry may not realise, and it is only fair that artists receive just reward for their hard work.

So, how can you help?

One way is by attending ticketed events, you can usually get to see a a talented local artist from as little as £5-£10, (the price of couple of drinks (dependant on your tipple of choice of course))!

Another way to support independent artists is to purchase music rather than stream.

There are many streaming services out there (I'm not going to name names), most, if not all of them pay a pittance to those writing and/or performing songs, while this may not be illegal, it certainly takes advantage of grass roots singers & bands just wanting to reach a bigger audience.

Next time you see an artist you like why not purchase a CD, visit their website or a platform such as Bandcamp to buy a digital copy?

This may sound a bit old school these days, but there is something to be said about owning a copy of a song/album, allowing you to listen to it on any device whenever, wherever you want.. even if there is no internet connection!

Incidentally, I do take my hat off to Bandcamp who assisted many singers & bands during the pandemic by holding monthly Bandcamp Fridays, when all revenue from music purchased on those days went straight into the artists pocket.. that's right, Bandcamp didn't take one penny!!

You can also support grass roots music by attending open mic events where you can enjoy established & new, up coming artists.

The great thing about open mics is that they give new artists a platform to cut their teeth & gain confidence, enabling them to go forward and secure paid gigs.

Beware, not all open mic events have artists interests at heart!

Before the lockdown lots of bars began holding these events as a way to get artists to play for free.. the venue would make money behind the bar & pay nothing to those performing!

Following the easing of restrictions this pattern has returned with more & more venues getting on the bandwagon. With this in mind please look for open mics where venues treat the event as a rehearsal... if an artist goes down well they get a booking. Other supportive venues have one or two featured artists who get paid with an open mic in the break.

If unsure of which venues host ethical open mics, details can be found by following me on FB: Daz In The Hat, signing up to my blog & subscribing to the newsletter.

If you know of any supportive open mic nights please let me know.. even better join the blogging team & tell us about them yourself.

Try to imagine a life without independent artists to entertain, it doesn't bare thinking about!

No Music - No Life... Support Independent, Unsigned Artists & Their Music

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