Has the time come for know-how to bridge the hole between the music {industry} and wider hospitality sector to assist enhance the variety of dwell alternatives for artists?

The following MBW op / ed comes from Tom Brady, co-founder and managing partner of the London music startup GigRealm.

Trying to book concerts as a new artist has always been a challenge.

Most bands begin this journey by pestering their hometown and begging for a break just to play there in front of a sparse audience for no fee or paid for the privilege.

In response, we often hear the refrain “Pay your dues”, as everyone involved just shrugs and accepts the norm.

This is of course a blanket generalization, as many grassroots music venues are very good at mentoring and promoting new bands, but there is still an embedded culture of unfair pay, free play, or pay-to-play in certain areas of live play Music sector.

And let’s be honest, music bars didn’t have it easy. The vast majority are renters and the last 16 months of empty stages has put tremendous pressure on their profitability as a company. Music Venue Trust, especially along with the broader music community, has done an incredible job of protecting the UK sector through these dark ages and has managed to keep the approximately 900 members of the Music Venue Alliance alive long enough to see this summer to reopen.

In recent years, however, hundreds, if not thousands, of traditional live music venues have been closed, severely limiting opportunities for musicians looking to start their live careers and build audiences.

And of course that has the consequence that these artists lose the opportunity to build a fan base, move up to larger halls and ultimately become the arena fillers and festival headliners of the future.

Not only is this a problem for the grassroots sectors, its ripple effect has the potential to affect even the largest global promoters.

It is quite true that there will continue to be a strong focus on maintaining the health of basic music events, but it is clear that we need to think more about how to engage the wider hospitality sector in order for this important part of the music industry’s ecosystem to thrive help.

We have to find a way to offer artists different types of venues beyond what we know as “traditional” music venues, otherwise they will move in fewer and fewer circles as the options available to them become more and more limited, and so do we , as an industry, may be missing out on a large pool of developing talent.

However, unlike traditional grassroots music events, those in the broader hospitality industry are not always experts in promoting live music and can be overwhelmed or intimidated by the challenge.

Many will never have hosted a live music night before.

While this lack of industry-specific knowledge could have been a major obstacle in the past, there are many innovative technology solutions out there today that can simplify and demystify the whole process.

We need to find a way to offer artists different types of venues that go beyond what we know as ‘traditional’ music venues. “

Technology is already playing a vital role in the discovery of new talent throughout the music industry, and the chronic staff shortage in the hospitality industry is affecting the day-to-day operation of the premises, leaving even less time for operators to implement new initiatives, helping to promote the process of live music to speed up. All of this while providing data-driven analytics via social media profiles and other metrics that lead to better informed decisions by the booking artist.

It can enable those who work in the hospitality industry to easily host a live music evening at very short notice, making it possible to directly connect artists and venues, sign contracts and pay within minutes.

We know that the demand for live music is increasing from people who use pubs, bars and other places outside of the traditional music field. We know from current industry surveys how much live music was missing during the pandemic.

A survey conducted by the Long Live the Local campaign found that live music is the second most missed music when in a pub. even beat live sports. Imagine if the hospitality industry embraced this shift in consumer demand and opened more of its venues to live music? Pubs and bars alone represent around 47,000 venues across the UK.

The way people use pubs and bars and what to expect has changed a lot lately. Consumers are looking for more “experience-oriented” offerings from venues. From “bottomless brunches” to drag shows to table tennis. The pressure on the hospitality industry remains to diversify and attract the next generation of customers.

This shift in attitudes has shed light on live entertainment. Traditional pub entertainment like live sports – especially soccer, which has been so important in recent years – isn’t driving the increased visitor numbers and wet sales that used to be. There is now a distinct trend that people are enjoying this from the comfort of their own homes rather than in a pub or bar.

Live music, of course, cannot be enjoyed in the same way. CGA’s 2019 British Pub Market Report showed that 28% of shoppers now say they would be encouraged to go to a pub or bar if there was live music on them. This compares to just 7% who said they watched live sports on TV. The musicians’ union ‘Live Music Venue Advice 2021’ also reported an increase in wet sales of up to 60% when live music was offered.

Live music and hospitality, two of the UK’s greatest treasures, have always been very closely linked and both have seen major challenges over the past 16 months.

“Live music and hospitality, two of Britain’s most precious cultural assets, have always been very closely linked and both have faced major challenges over the past 16 months.”

Shouldn’t we now acknowledge that one cannot really thrive without the other?

With technology now able to remove much of the uncertainty, lack of knowledge, and reluctance associated with promoting live music, it may be time for the entire hospitality industry to embrace the opportunities presented to them .

Emma McClarkin, CEO of the British Beer and Pub Association, recently stated at a GigRealm roundtable, “The digital transformation is happening faster in venues” and that “venues can see the technology and what it can bring, especially in the space the live music and I think that’s something really exciting. ”

This was confirmed by Kate Nicholls, CEO of UKHospitality, who added: “There is an opportunity for a wider range of restaurants to explore the possibilities of live entertainment … to give young emerging talent a real space to practice their craft. “

Now is the time that the doors of a wider range of venues opened, with consumer attitudes shifting and the hospitality industry becoming more open to more live entertainment? Seize the chance to play an important role in the future of live music while helping diversify and grow your own business?

The music industry would surely welcome it as it looks to the next generation of live musical talent.

Music business worldwide

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