Last week the Momentum Music Fund was announced at The Great Escape conference in Brighton as joint venture by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) and Arts Council England with the aim to support up to 75 up-and-coming artists with financial grants ranging from £5,000 to £15,000. In a move that highlights the importance of supporting underground musicians and genre developments, it goes without saying that there is a dire need to pay more attention to the avant garde or up-and-coming, where ACE's chief executive, Alan Davey, has accused Universal and Sony of deliberately avoiding financing left-field talent.
Now that the modern music industry majorly relies on both a pittance pay from streaming and the sale of compilation albums, in the past five years we have seen scores of independent record labels shut their doors, the sale of major EMI to Universal, and the increasing reliance of online pressing and distribution deals by artists whom are hungry for success. Sadly in this period only £1Bn has been spent on A&R, and this is something that the ACE and BPI have criticised in a Radio 4 interview. In reaction to the lack of risk that major record labels have shown to signing new 'left-field' artists the Arts Council Chief Executive has said that "It's something that you see lots of industries get into when they're under pressure. They'll concentrate on giving the public what they think the public want, rather than exploring or [bringing] the public things they didn't know they want."
With a lack of investment the BPI's Chief Executive, Geoff Taylor, commented on the above to Music Week ?by telling them that "record labels are ill informed and out of touch" and that "five out of the top ten best-selling albums last year were from the UK. It is difficult to see that global breakthroughs such as Adele, Mumford & Sons, Emeli Sande, Ed Sheeran, Muse and Jessie J represent short-term, or a failure to back talent." At The Pro Audio Web Blog we strongly believe in the development of lesser known artists that can potentially go on to developing revolutionary music movements or countercultures. It seems vital that more money needs to be invested to spark the imagination of a generation, and with the introduction of the Momentum Music Fund this is a great start.
Last week the Momentum Music Fund was announced at The Great Escape conference in Brighton as joint venture by the British Phonographic Industry BPI and Arts Council England with the aim to support up to 75 up-and-coming artists with financial...