2020 may have been a shocker of a year for the live music industry in the US, but it’s closing with some good news. After lengthy wrangling, a second stimulus deal was agreed this weekend, with final votes expected today before President Trump (hopefully) signs it off.
It’s welcome news for many reasons, but from Music Ally’s perspective it’s because the deal includes the Save Our Stages Act, with its support for independent music venues in the US. $15bn of funding for live venues, independent cinemas and other cultural institutions to be specific.
“These venues are so important to my state and many states across the country. They are the lifeblood of our communities. They were first to close, and will be the last to open. The bill gives them a fighting chance,” said Senator Chuck Schumer, who had co-sponsored the legislation.
Covid-19 vaccines are starting to be distributed, although the younger end of the concertgoing audience will not be first in line to receive them – meaning that the live industry will not be springing back into life immediately. That’s why the Save Our Stages Act has been vigorously campaigned for.
Efforts continue around the world. The UK’s Music Venue Trust announced last week that it has distributed £230k to 24 of the independent venues at most immediate risk of permanent closure, after they failed to secure the funding they needed from recent government support.
Also in the UK, a short documentary film, This Is Just An Interval, has been released to show people that the live music industry needs support, explaining why “suppliers are going out of business, small venues are facing closure, and talented specialists are leaving the industry to find new careers”.
Available on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and LinkedIn, it’s a reminder of the work still to be done in early 2021, as music people across the world nurture their hopes of getting back to gigging and clubbing later that year.
Image by Olga Visavi / Shutterstock.com
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