MUSIC Venue Trust’s team works hard to balance calls for support and expressions of concern for the music ecosystem with activity that celebrates positivity. In anticipation of International Women’s Day next week, when they will be highlighting the women vital to the Grassroots Music Venue sector, they have announced some brilliant new patrons.
They welcome rock duo Nova Twins, Welsh post-punk trio Adwaith, DJs Moxie and HAAi, singer-songwriter Kerri Watt, and Director of Mother Artists Live, booking agent Natasha Gregory. Below they explain what these venues mean to them.
‘We owe so much to grassroots venues. They are the only way new bands can gain experience and start their careers! They support new artists and bring together an incredible community of local music lovers and musicians. They are essential for smaller bands touring around the UK. Without them, we don’t know where we’d be today!’
‘Grassroots Music Venues are hugely important to us as people as well as a band. Without these venues, we never would have thought that we could start a band (let alone singing in our native language). They are the fundamental building blocks for all artists and musicians all over the world. Without venues, there are no artists. Without artists, there’s no music. Without music, there’s no culture.’
‘Grassroots music venues are imperative to any music scene as it allows emerging artists to experiment with their performances. It takes away the constraints and pressures of having to fill a larger venue. Some of my most memorable nights as a punter and a DJ have been spent in smaller venues. They create a certain atmosphere, a certain magic that makes you feel as though you could be at a friend’s house party, memories that are only forged when you’re packed that tightly and all experiencing the same thing, at the same time.’
‘To many, our grassroots venues are home. A safe space to let loose, feel free, find your tribe and discover the magic of new music being developed before your eyes and ears. They are the beating heart of many communities, and growing up in the eclectic Glasgow music scene, I’ve been so lucky to feel a part of that.
‘As artists, venue staff, promoters and gig-goers, supporting the MVT is a collaborative effort to protect these sacred spaces – a world without them is one we can’t imagine.’
‘My first years in the UK were spent playing in and going to grassroots venues. These were so crucial in not only nurturing me as a musician and performer but also served as a safe house for likeminded creatives. These venues allow freedom of expression. Now, as a touring DJ, I understand the importance of smaller venues in really developing your craft. Without them, we would be stuck in a commercial loop that is less accessible to rising talent to breakthrough. Because of this, I am proud to be an ambassador for the Music Venue Trust.’
‘Our industry is (and our communities are) nothing without Grassroots Music Venues. It’s the start of every band’s dreams. Its where they learn their craft, meet their fans face to face, share a drink, and form a loyal following for years to come, memories to last a lifetime and the only way to build long term solid foundations. Its where venue owners, bar staff, door staff, promoters, managers, agents, merch sellers, tour managers, road crew etc, go to build themselves, to support their artists, enjoy good music and provide for their own families and communities. Its where fans get to experience their ‘first’ time with what will be their favourite artists in years to come. A place where they will buy merch to support bands, where they will bring their friends to have a great night out and keep their friendships close and minds healthy and strong. We must all stand by Music Venue Trust and all they do, shout as loud as we can for them, pay them back for all they have done for us, that they continue to do. They need us, and I will support them in any way I can.’
All of MVT’s current patrons can be seen by visiting: musicvenuetrust.com/patrons/.