As I approach the end of 2022 I can safely say it’s been a great year for live music for me. I saw over 100 bands live at individual gig, small and large scale festivals at 13 different venues over 29 days across Brighton, in the UK. I’m so incredibly fortunate that I live so close so much a vibrant hub of musical activity. Some of the people I’ve met in Brighton over the past 18 months have seen even more bands.
But it’s not all good news for artists and venues. Many of the grassroots venues around the country are in financial trouble, and the cost of living crisis will make things even worse. Earlier this month the Music Venue Trust’s Annual Survey Report highlighted that the number of live shows at grassroots venues was down 24% from 2019 to 2021/21. We also know that venues such as Manchester’s Night & Day venue face court battles over noise complaints. In 2023 it’s expected Brighton’s iconic Prince Albert pub will have holiday flats built next door, which will encourage more noise complaints. Sheffield’s famous Leadmill is still hanging on, but for how long?
We’re passionate about grassroots music and grassroots venues here at the Grassroots Music Network. If you have the time and a little money we encourage you to go to a gig in 2023. At least 3 of the mini-festivals I went to in 2022 were free, so you may have enough money to buy some merch or a drink from the venue’s bar. Every little will help keep the music industry alive, and music is one of the reasons I get out of bed in the morning.
Not sure to look for gigs? Checkout the Music Venue Trust Gig Guide!