A group of UK artists and music-industry bodies has come out strongly against Brexit’s potential impact on British musicians. Paloma Faith, Annie Lennox, Chrissie Hynde, Pink Floyd’s Nick Mason, Jamie Cullum, Nadine Shah, Blur’s Dave Rowntree, Nitin Sawhney and Billy Bragg are among the artists signing a letter calling on the British government to find an ‘alternative to Brexit’. Music companies including Beggars Group and Kilimanjaro Live have also signed the letter, alongside industry bodies including AIM, the MMF, the Musicians Union, the Featured Artists Coalition and the Music Producers Guild.
The letter was drafted by the pro-Europe group Music4EU, which is inviting other artists, companies and industry bodies to back its call. “Brexit represents a significant threat to the UK’s Music Industry. Leaving the EU’s customs union, single market, VAT area and regulatory framework (in whole or part) could devastate our global market leadership, and damage our freedom to trade, tour and to promote our artists and our works,” it claims.
The BPI and umbrella organisation UK Music are not currently among its signatories, although BPI boss Geoff Taylor recently called for “a strong Brexit deal that enables artists to tour freely, robustly protects music rights, and prevents physical music products being impeded in transit” – an implicit warning against a deal (or a ‘no-deal’ scenario) that does not deliver these aims.