SORT IT OUT – 10 ways to save the UK Live Music Scene

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I don’t want to sound like a moany old git, but the London music scene is in a sorry state at the moment. In the old days (couple of years ago maybe) I used to be able to enjoy gigs/festivals without having corporate cock stuck down my throat. In those halcyon days too promoting used to be a craft with people in real competition to discover the next cool band.

Now its just stick anyone on the list and convince them they should pull in 10 friends each with no consideration for any of the punters.

Well the tide is turning and I call on all you Pop Junkets to join our cause. We want the London live music scene to be revived, improved and conquered so we may enjoy gig going just like we used to. There’s loads wrong, but if we club together and get our message out we can make things better – yes we can!

So, here are 10 point PopJunkie plan on how we can save the London Gig Scene. Don’t forget to join our Facebook group too!

1)Arrange gigs with complimentary bands. There is no point putting on a complete mish-mash of acts and demanding they bring down 10 fans each. Those bands are relying on those fans to come to their gigs regularly and they want them to come back again and again. If those fans know that the other bands they will be playing with will be something they will like they are bound to return. This is how music scenes grow.

2) Try and arrange regular themed nights. Its much easier if you know the score on what your local pub/bar is up to as it means you can just pop in without having to plan plan, plan. Note – PopJunkie is organising a Scott Walker night in February in London. Any bands who want to play a Walker cover or two get in touch via the comments.

3). Put the bands in contact with each other earlier on and try and help them get a discount on backline hire. In fact can’t venues just cough off up for this in first places? Don’t even get me started on the bass amp situation! If venues can’t provide the right equipment then they shouldn’t be hosting bands…..sort it out!

4) Cut the price of gig tix. All unsigned gigs seem to be around £5. That means a fan has to pay £5 for half an hour’s entertainment (if you don’t put them on with other bands they might like) – if they are not interested in the other bands that’s an expensive half an hour. And as far bigger gigs at Brixton, The O2 etc. Your prices are way too high! Come on it shouldn’t cost £55 to see ACDC at face value prices. There’s a recession on don’t you know.

5) Get rid of all these mass organised corporate ticket touting sites like Seatwave, Viagogo and ebay. How dare you buy up our tickets (yes our tickets – we are the fans) and then sell on at disgustingly inflated prices. Do you have no soul?

6) How about Friday and Saturday gigs. Most unsigned gigs appear on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Why is this? The pub is dead otherwise and the venue expect you to bring down at least 10 people down on a Monday night, multiplied by 3 or 4 bands, so who is the winner? How likely is it for a band to gain new fans from people walking in on a Monday night from the street to pay £5 to see bands they never heard of? Basically the band gains nothing from it whatsoever other than practice.

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7) Carling please, please let us have other types of beer at your venues. Carling or Hoegarden is not a choice. This is supposed to be a democratic country but it doesn’t feel like it.

8) Let’s have some Cider. Why is it that we have to wait until Glastonbury to enjoy proper cider at gigs? It’s not fair that the only time of the year we can enjoy proper cloudy cider at a gig is during a festival. Cider is made for music. The tickely cheeks it gives you, the cheekiness and excitedness guaranteed to lift your spirits at any gig. Please, please, please Mr Venue type man let us have cider at gigs!

9) Be kind to smokers. Smoking in venues has been banned for ages but it has made me feel like something is missing. It’s just not a gig unless you come home with fag burns in your clothes and stinking of smoke. These little outside communal areas just don’t cut it. For starters we have to miss part of the gig – can’t you get screens out outside and speakers so we don’t have to miss out?

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10) Get heavy with sleazy blokes – Sleazy men have always been a problem at gigs and I call on you all now to raise again the profile of the dodgy man-in-a-mac molester. Skulking about at the front accidentally pressing your appendage into my back – you know who you are! Shame on you perv man go back to your stone and leave us gigettes alone in peace to enjoy our music

Here’s my rant in vid form. Note glazed looking Sean

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