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UK music licensing laws

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Howard K, Jan 27, 2003.


  1. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    UK
    Thank God, it's about time. I'm so sick of going to pubs and hearing live music 'all the time'. I'd much rather hear some talentless overpaid nobody spin a bunch of mindless dance records all night.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/music/2697287.stm

    This really really really F***S me off.

    The live music scene in the UK is weak enough already, so they put even more pressure on the performer and the venue, making it even harder for anyone to get their music heard.

    What possible purpose can this serve?

    What possible good can it do anyone?

    All it seems to me is a chance to get cash through fining people playing a few songs in a pub!!!

    It absolutely sucks, big time... and I for one am going to do smoe research on the government web site and start a petition. I trust I can rely on UK TB'ers to sign their name on the virtual dotted line?

    I'll get back in a few days and attached a cover letter and petition document for you to put details into.

    I dont expect everyone to give their address details online - do you think name, town and county would be sufficient?

    HK
     
  2. moley

    moley

    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    Damn right.
     
  3. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    UK
    apparently there is online petition already :)

    i'll dig it out and post a link...
     
  4. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    This will also affect - rehearsals, playing with friends in your own home, even playing an instrument in a music shop - they will have to have a performance licence or you won't be able to play any of the instruments!! :rolleyes:

    It is clearly ridciulous, but there are loads of petitions going round on the web and in real life - I've agreed to sign 4 or 5 already!!
     
  5. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    UK
  6. moley

    moley

    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    What? Doesn't this just affect performance in public?
     
  7. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    UK
    Oh God dont me started!

    It makes me SO angry! - Some bloke gets paid several hundred quid a night to play a few records, while peope who actually make their own music get screwed.

    How does that work?!!!

    :mad:
    :mad:
    :mad:
     
  8. moley

    moley

    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    I didn't see anything in that article Howard posted about it affecting performances in your own home - only public venues.
     
  9. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Here's the exact wording of the petition that everybody is signing :

    "We, the undersigned, are concerned that the Licensing Bill proposals to make the performance of live music licensable in pubs and clubs, in places where alcohol is served, in churches, synagogues, mosques and other places of worship, in schools and colleges, in community centres and village and parish halls, and in private homes and gardens where private parties and weddings may be held will have an enormously detrimental effect on musicians and live music performances; fears that the raising of money for charities by musicians will be seriously compromised; consider it will seriously impinge on the folk community including folk music and traditional folk activities such as morris dancing, wassailing, etc; believe that the penalties for breaking the law of a six month jail sentence of a £20,000 fine are far too draconian; consider it grossly unfair and inconsistent that live music will not be licensable in Scotland but will be in England and Wales; regret that the Government has decided to replace the anomalous two in a bar rule with a none in a bar rule which will catch all live music performances; believes that the requirement for the provision of entertainment facilities to become licensable which will ensnare music shops, music and dance studios and teachers, represents a totally unacceptable regulatory intrusion into mainstream activities; and calls on the Government to amend the relevant parts of bill in order to remove the iniquities faced by musicians and the music industry as a whole.

    Sincerely,
     
  10. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    UK
    it's just a way of getting more cash out of the public... another tax...
     
  11. moley

    moley

    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    Man.

    That's awful.
     
  12. wulf

    wulf

    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    Has anyone come across any arguments for this scheme? I can't think of any - even potential increases to government revenues will probably be cancelled out by people deciding they might as well listen to their own cd collections at home rather than listening to somebody elses in a grotty pub :mad:

    In the meanwhile, time to sharpen my pen and wing another one to my MP... (I've already signed the aforesaid petition).

    Wulf
     
  13. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    This is the offical press release which sparked optimism amongst Jazz players but was found to mean in practice exatly the opposite of what they seemed to be saying!!


    69/02 12 April 2002

    KIM HOWELLS PLEDGES TO REFORM THE "TWO MUSICIANS RULE"

    Minister for Music, Kim Howells, today pledged to simplify licensing laws to make it easier and cheaper for pubs to obtain permission to stage musical performances.

    Speaking to representatives from the world of jazz, folk, world and fusion music, at Modal 2002, an annual conference for the UK's non-mainstream music industry, Kim Howells said:

    "I want to ensure that everyone, regardless of where they live, their culture or ethnic background, gender or ability to pay, has the opportunity to experience live music."

    Kim Howells spoke to delegates about public entertainment licenses and their effect on live musical performances in pubs. He said:

    "I am firmly committed to the reform and modernisation of our archaic and at times, wholly stupid, licensing laws. I do not need persuasion that the "two musicians rule" is outdated and pointless."

    The current rule allows one or two singers or musicians to perform in a pub without the landlord being required to obtain the normal fee-paid public entertainment licence from the local authority.

    Dr Howells continued:

    "Simply abolishing the two musicians rule is not enough. Abolition would remove the exemption and make it harder and more costly for pubs to put on singers and other musical performers. Our approach is to simplify and integrate the licensing regimes so that it is easier and less expensive for pubs to obtain the necessary permission to stage musical performances. These reforms have to be introduced through primary legislation - there is no quick fix.

    "We intend to bring forward a Bill modernising the licensing laws as soon as Parliamentary time permits."

    The reformed licensing system will sweep away a great deal of current red tape, which deters many licensees from staging musical and other public entertainment. But it will still provide protection for customers and for local residents who can be disturbed by excessive noise from some premises.

    Notes to Editors

    The licensing White Paper - Time for Reform: which was published by the Home Office in April 2000 can be found on the DCMS website: www.culture.gov.uk
     
  14. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    UK
    Well this is the question... I emailed round all my friends asking them to sign and one responded saying "there must be a good reason for this going ahead"

    Nonsense!! - CASH! Mullah, Wonga, Readies, £££'s!!!!!!

    In the article on BBC news it says that it will be easier to apply for licenses as they will be dealt with along with the licence to serve alcholol.

    So playing and listening to live music is best associated with selling people a drug responsable for millions of deaths a year?!!

    Wrong wrong wrong wrong!!!!

    I can see the need for live music licensing, but the one or two people rule is perfect as it is. It allows for people to play muisc at reasonable volume to a small audience and that's a very good thing.

    It just seems everyone is set to drain the last ounce of musical creativity from the UK, by making it nigh on impossible for them to perform until they've won Pop Idol.
     
  15. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Well - I disagree - and the MU and Jazz fans/players had a long-running campaign and lobbying whaich has probably caused this change.

    So - virtually all the Jazz groups I go to see are trios/quartets - so how ridiculous is it that they can only play on premises with a music licence - why is there a huge difference between a Jazz trio and a Duo? No sense whatsoever!!

    It is just a case of putting bass and drums out of work :mad: so you get singer and piano, can play anywhere, but add bass and drums and it has to be a premises with a music licence.


    So - they have changed it, but as you say linked it to alcohol and have added that all premises need a licence for any sort of music with no exception. So - a lot of the gigs I did last year, were people erecting marquees in their gardens for parties/ weddings etc Under the new bill they will all need a special music licence to have a band, whereas before it didn't matter if it was your private residence.

    The way it is worded means that music shops will also be subject to this and anybody is liable to get fined huge amounts, at the discretion of the police!
     
  16. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    UK
    yes, the trio example is a very good point.

    so why not extend the "no need for a licence" to four people? i still cant see a problem with that?

    ..and as for weddings - and the type of private gigs you described. that's just plain wrong.
     
  17. Fortunately North of Hadrians, our bunch of useless grubber politicians are to busy voting themselves wage rises, more holidays and spending all our loot on £88000 reception desks for the new Mickey Mouse parliament to have thought about this nonsense...SO FAR!.

    :mad:
     
  18. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    UK
    Nice work if you can get it eh! ;)
     
  19. moley

    moley

    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    Well, there has been some misinterpretation. The idea here is that a license is required where there is entertainment for profit. While this does apply to private functions - entertainment in such functions is only licensable when it is for profit. As such, weddings etc. will be exempt, assuming that guests aren't charged, and the entertainment is not for money-making purposes.

    If you read the bill - you'll see that playing in music shops is also exempt - as this is for the purposes of testing an instrument, not for the purposes of providing entertainment.

    The same applies to rehearsals. Band rehearsals in public venues are again, not for entertainment purposes, and are exempt.

    It's not quite as bad as you make it seem, Bruce.