Can the music industry really survive BREXIT?
With Theresa May stepping down as Prime Minister, concern grows regarding the likelihood of achieving a strong BREXIT deal with the European Union (EU). Such concern has not gone unnoticed by the music industry.
Geoff Taylor, BPI and Brit Awards CEO, suggested the need for “a strong Brexit deal that enables artists to tour freely, robustly protects music rights, and prevents physical music products being impeded in transit.” The exact impact BREXIT will have on the music industry and its artists is yet to be fully understood; although the risk to touring and the UK economy is prevalent. For many artists, especially those who do not write their own material,
A letter written by Music4EU; a pro-Europe group encouraging the British government to find an alternative to BREXIT then enables the UK to remain a member of the EU; details the concerns of the music industry regarding such a change.
“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…” – (Music4EU, 2018).
The letter is signed by many respected music artists, including Paloma Faith, Annie Lennox and Dave Rowntree (Blur) to name a few. It is not just artists who are highlighting their concern, as signatures also include Jonathan Wood of Ooosh! Tours Ltd, Beggars Group and the Musician’s Union. It seems music industry representatives from all aspects of the industry are raising worthwhile concerns; particularly relating to the impact BREXIT would have on how the music industry contributes to the UK economy.
“The music industry [currently] contributes £4.5 billion to the UK economy, and our world-beating artists helped to create exports of over £2.5 billion, which is growing fast in a global digital music business. Live music is at the heart of every artist’s business and contributed around £1bn to the UK economy, and freedom of movement is core to an artist’s ability to tour and promote their art.”
– (Music4EU, 2018).
So how can the music industry survive BREXIT? With arguments suggesting touring and studio feels will be affected, the outlook looks gloomy. Yet, the London music scene is continuing to prosper; as it has done through economic crisis’ and movements significantly affecting the industry. Whilst BREXIT looks to be a challenging time for the music industry, it is not one that will defeat the vibrancy and calibre of the UK music scene.
Author: Harry Patten