Liverpool, Music City? - Report

bidolito

Is Liverpool a global music city?
Challenges, reflections and solutions from the Liverpool music community.
A listening project by LJMU, Bido Lito! magazine and the Liverpool music community.
May - November 2017

LIVERPOOL,

MUSIC

CITY?

Is Liverpool A Global Music City?

Challenges, reflections and solutions

from the Liverpool Music Community

A listening project by LJMU, Bido Lito! Magazine

and the Liverpool music community

May - November 2017


1.0

EXECUTIVE

SUMMARY


Photography ©

Andy Hughes


The purpose of this project was to provide the

Liverpool music community with a platform to

discuss the challenges and opportunities facing

the sector as we move into 2018, 10 years on from

the 2008’s Capital of Culture celebrations.

This project is not intended to provide a

masterplan or a road map for the future. It

is purely intended to demonstrate the music

sector’s ability to galvanise, its appetite for

a collective solution and a desire to work in

dynamic partnership with the city to shape a new

music future for Liverpool.


Photography ©

Keith Ainsworth


1.1 Team

This report and the underlying

research was undertaken by a multidisciplinary

team at Liverpool John

Moores University (LJMU), Bido Lito!

Magazine and the Liverpool music

community.

1.2

Method

A live ‘Liverpool, Music City?’

public discussion was held on 4th

May 2017 at Constellations in the

Baltic Triangle, Liverpool. Five

themes were explored: ‘Music in the

City’, ‘Music Tourism’, ‘New Musical

Talent Development’, the city as

a ‘Music Industry Hub’ and ‘Music

Education’ at the event. Participants

were asked to provide their written

comments about each of the themes.

233 participants attended the event,

representing in excess of 100 music

organisations and 264 responses were

collected. To support this public

discussion an online survey was

available for those who could not

attend the event to express their

views and 312 responses provided

online. In total, 573 responses

and 749 comments were collected and

analysed using content analysis

coding.

1.3

Key ‘Music in the City

findings

The most consistent issues cited by

the music community when considering

the challenges to Liverpool’s live

music culture are issues surrounding

property, the closure of venues

and wider challenges of the built

environment – such as noise complaints

and developer power. Key issues and

ideas for potential ways forward were

provided that could offer innovative

solutions.

1.4.

Key ‘Music Tourism’

findings

The project data shows an overwhelming

consensus around the need to develop

Liverpool’s music tourism experience.

This focusses strongly on the need

for new strategies that bring the

city's heritage offer much closer to

the vibrant year-round live music and

festival offer. A wealth of ideas

were provided about how this could be

undertaken.

1.5.

Key ‘New Musical

Talent Development’

findings

Artists need time and space to develop,

alongside structured and innovative

development programmes and artistfriendly

city policies. There is a

need to open up access to Liverpool’s

music culture – both in terms of

audiences and artists – to people of

all backgrounds. The ongoing financial

challenges to artists are raised

consistently. Ideas for new solutions

were provided that contribute to this

development.


1.6.

Key ‘Music Industry Hub’

findings

This work has helped to highlight

the diversity of music businesses

currently operating in the city,

with a full spectrum of labels,

publishers, music manufacturers,

production companies, studios,

engineers, managers, marketers,

PRs, venues, distributors, agents

and musicians themselves keen to

participate in the process. There

are the starting embers of a music

industry in the city, but this

urgently needs support. There is

a consistent call for a long-term

strategy to support the sector, led

by the sector in partnership with the

city and our universities.

1.7.

Key ‘Music Education’

findings

The project demonstrated the desire

and appetite of the music sector to

become much more involved in music

education in the city. There is a

need to develop local audiences

from the youngest age and provide a

platform for artists under the age of

18. Positive links between the NHS,

support services and the local music

sector need to be further developed

and better co-ordinated, as do work

experience and support opportunities

within the local music industry.

1.7

Conclusions

This project has been an exercise

in listening, in engaging the

music community in conversation,

harvesting ideas and experiences

and gauging the sector’s appetite

to take its place at the centre of

a collective new approach to music

policy in Liverpool. The process has

demonstrated – with fervour, breadth

and volume – a music community

insisting on being part of a new

collaborative approach. This is also

evidenced within the dataset, with

the need for greater strategy and coordination

consistently emerging as

a prevalent theme in each of our five

areas of focus.

This project has also demonstrated

that the music community is ready to

take its seat at the table, to work

in collaboration with the city and

craft a new future for Liverpool,

with music rightly embedded at its

heart.


2.0

INTRODUCTION


2.1

Craig G Pennington,

Publisher, Bido Lito!

Magazine.

Liverpool, Music City?’ Project Lead

A buoyant Music Cities movement has gathered pace

over recent years, a new sphere of thinking that

intersects music, urban policy and planning. We

see cities across the world – from Groningen to

Adelaide – creating innovative new frameworks

which place support for and the development

of their music sectors and communities at the

heart of their city vision. In contrast, we have

up until now witnessed an absence of strategic

planning around music policy in Liverpool.

This project is intended to present

fundamental and incisive questions to

Liverpool’s music community, paving the

way for a new form of sector-led leadership

around music policy in the city.


This project is intended to present

fundamental and incisive questions to

Liverpool’s music community, paving

the way for a new form of sector-led

leadership around music policy in the

city.

But first, as a community we need

to ask some searching questions; is

Liverpool a global music city? What

does music really mean to Liverpool

as we move into 2018, 10 years on

from 2008’s Capital of Culture

celebrations? How is music valued?

How healthy is Liverpool’s music

ecology? Is Liverpool’s Music Tourism

offer truly world-class and what role

does new music play within it? In

terms of its policies around noise,

planning and the role of music in the

built environment, does Liverpool

have a global music city outlook?

How good are we at developing the

next wave of artists in the city?

Is Liverpool an international hub

for music business? How joined up is

the city’s music industry and music

education offer?

We want to challenge our city’s

music community to come together and

develop a shared, collective vision

of a music future for our city.

Liverpool has a deep and unique

relationship with music. Few cities

in the world have music at the heart

of their city’s being, their people’s

identity and their economy in the

way Liverpool does. Music represents

a huge opportunity to reimagine what

Liverpool may be in the future,

both for the city itself and for our

relationship with the world.

For observers outside of the inner

workings of Liverpool’s music

community the sector could seem

somewhat impenetrable; a web of

complex entangled relationships,

a mesh of freelancers and small

organisations, a tension between

commerce and creativity, a hotchpotch

of vested interests, a fallback

position of ‘us versus them’.

Historically, such observations

would not have been without base;

entrenched divisions and internal

politics have in the past stifled

collaboration and collective action.

But, things have changed:

1) The traditional music industry has

collapsed.

2) Rampant gentrification and

development has changed the face of

the city, presenting huge challenges

to live music in the city.

3) Local authority budgets have been

slashed.

At the same time, the global Music

Cities movement is placing music

centre stage as forward-thinking

cities embed music at the centre of

their civic futures.

Currently, Liverpool is way behind.

We believe that Liverpool can forge

a new future by understanding,

prioritising, supporting and

galvanising its music sector. But,

the music community needs to be at

the heart of the process. The top

down approach has failed. A new era

of collaboration between the city,

city-region, universities and the

music community – from the grassroots

DIY venue to the international artist

manager – is needed.


The top down approach has failed.

A new era of collaboration between the

city, city-region, universities and the music

community – from the grassroots DIY

venue to the international artist manager –

is needed.

Liverpool, Music City?’ is a project

designed to listen. It is here to

give a platform to the voices,

ideas, opinions, observations and

experiences of the people who

understand Liverpool’s music sector

better than anyone; the music

community itself.

This project is not intended to

provide a masterplan or a road map

for the future. It is purely intended

to demonstrate the music sector’s

ability to galvanise, its appetite

for a collective solution and a

desire to work in dynamic partnership

with the city to shape a new music

future for Liverpool.


Photography ©

Keith Ainsworth


2.2

LJMU

Multi-Disciplinary

team of researchers

Principal Investigator: Dr Jan Brown

(Liverpool Business School)

Researchers: Professor Ian Fillis

(Liverpool Business School)

Mr Kevin Johnston

(Faculty of Engineering and Technology)

Ms Dominique Aspey

(Centre for Entrepreneurship)

The project arose out of the collective music

research interests of members of staff at LJMU

who are based in different deaneries and faculties

within the university. For this project, the

principal investigator was Dr Jan Brown from the

Liverpool Business School.


From the Liverpool Business School

perspective, the importance of

supporting collaborative community

research was highlighted by Dr Jan

Brown who stated that ““As the

principal investigator for this

project I have been impressed by

the enthusiasm of the participants’

passion to get involved and have an

active voice in the development of

music in the city. We at LJMU are

eager to support the development

of such an important part of

Liverpool’s identity, – music –

and we look forward to becoming

long-term partners with the music

community as it develops both now

and in the future. By working as

part of a multi-disciplinary team

at LJMU consisting of members of

the Liverpool Business School (Dr

Jan Brown and Prof Ian Fillis),

Faculty of Engineering and Technology

(Kevin Johnston) and Centre for

Entrepreneurship (Dominique Aspey),

we have been able to provide

advice and guidance from different

perspectives and we feel that this

has helped us to provide support and

build connections that can develop

into long-term partnerships in the

future.”

The timely nature of the report was

identified by Prof. Ian Fillis who

noted that“the Liverpool Music City

project is extremely timely and

important for the city, its citizens

and other interested stakeholders

in the industry and wider cultural

and creative industries. This

important project coincides with work

on the formation of the Cultural

Entrepreneurship Research Centre at

Liverpool John Moores University.

As Professor of Entrepreneurship

I am delighted to be involved in

moving the ‘Liverpool, Music City?’

Project forward. This report is an

important step towards realising our

longer-term goals, including the

raising of the profile of the music

sector in Liverpool, nationally and

internationally.”

The importance of partnerships to

LJMU was identified by the Dean

of the Liverpool Business School,

Timothy Nichol, who remarked that

“we are very aware that innovations

and enterprise are key drivers

of growth in the city. As an

innovative business school based

in the heart of Liverpool we are

keen to develop partnerships with

communities, business and industry.

The relationship with the music

community is one such partnership we

hope to develop over the long term as

it develops and adapts to meet future

challenges and opportunities.”


From the Faculty of Engineering and

Technology perspective, the pride in

being involved with such research

was highlighted by Karl Jones

(Programme Leader for BSc Audio &

Music Production, Dept of Electronics

and Electrical Engineering for

stated that “I’m proud that we are

contributing to this valuable report

and to the resurgence of the sleeping

giant that is the Liverpool’s music

community.”

From a Centre for Entrepreneurship

viewpoint Dominique Aspey believes

that “An ever increasing number

of our enterprising students and

graduates want to build businesses

in audio and music production, music

videography and music journalism.

We need a robust music industry

ecosystem if we want to keep graduate

talent and entrepreneurial mind-sets

in Liverpool. This report plays a

big part in understanding the current

state of the ecosystem and what we

need to do, not just to keep it

buoyant but actively flourishing and

make Liverpool the place to start a

music-related business.”


Photography ©

Michael Kirkham


3.0

RESEARCH

METHODOLOGY


This research project and the ‘Liverpool, Music

City?’ event arose from discussions between LJMU

and members of the Liverpool music community

about exploring the Liverpool music ecosystem.

From talks with members of the music community

it became evident that there was an interest in

coming together to discuss successes to date and

potential ways the community could work together

to grow the city’s music ecosystem in the future.

As LJMU is a civic university and the LJMU multidisciplinary

research team has a specific interest

in cultural entrepreneurship, the academic team

were happy to support such an event and research

project. The role of the LJMU research team was

to provide research advice and support in the

collection and analysis of the public discussion

data.


Once it was established that such an

event and project was of interest

to members of the Liverpool music

community, an article was written

in Bido Lito! Magazine in March

2017 (see appendix 6.1). To coincide

with this article, a new website

liverpoolmusiccity.co.uk was launched

that gave details of the project and

provided a link to an online survey/

questionnaire (see appendix 6.2

for details), as well as providing

details of a public discussion event.

Taking the themes of ‘Music in the

City’, ‘Music Tourism’, ‘New Musical

Talent Development’, the city as

a ‘Music Industry Hub’ and ‘Music

Education’, following suit from the

Bido Lito! article, the online survey

was completed by 56 participants

between 27th March to 16th October

2017. It currently remains live.

312 responses were analysed from

the online survey/questionnaire

(see Table 1). The live ‘Liverpool,

Music City?’ public discussion

event was held on 4th May 2017 at

Constellations in the Baltic Triangle

in Liverpool. The event took place

from 6:30-9:00pm with live music

post-event, but informal discussion

remained active late into the night.

233 participants from across the

city’s music community, representing

in excess of 100 music organisations,

attended the event and 264 responses

were collected in total (see Table

1).

The five main themes (‘Music in the

City’, ‘Music Tourism’, ‘New Musical

Talent Development’, the city as

a ‘Music Industry Hub’ and ‘Music

Education’) were used as discussion

topics in five pods (see appendix

6.3 for details) with discussions led

by industry experts in these areas.

LJMU academics captured the main

issues live on mind maps displayed

at the event, and participants

wrote their reflections down on A5

cards that were handed to the LJMU

academic at the end of each session

for post-event analysis. At the end

of the event, all of the A5 cards

were collected and collated by the

LJMU academics and their content

was inputted onto an electronic

spreadsheet for analysis. Each

response was analysed using content

analysis for emerging themes. It

should be noted that many responses

included comments on more than

one theme and this is reflected in

the difference between the ‘total

responses’ and ‘total comments’

columns in Table 1.

In total, 749 comments were

identified, coded and categorised as

shown in the results below. In some

themes, sub-themes emerged and these

sub-themes have been identified in

the findings. All comments were given

equal weighting.

The full dataset is included

in Appendix 6.5 (available at

liverpoolmusiccity.co.uk) with a

summary table included in each

section of Chapter 4. The most

prevalent themes in each section have

been demonstrated using comments

drawn from the dataset in Chapter 4.


It should be noted that coding of

qualitative data into themes is

subject to coder interpretation,

but, as professional researchers, we

(LJMU) followed a strict protocol for

the data coding, input and analysis.

For this project, one coder (Jan

Brown) input and coded all the data

to ensure consistency with other

researchers checking the coding

process for rigour.

In order to represent the key

themes that emerged from the data

bar charts were used to provide

readers with an easy to understand

visual representation of the data.

Specific quotes were then selected to

‘speak’ for each theme. These quotes

were selected from a wide range of

participant comments to allow the

diversity of views voiced to be

represented in the report. It should

be noted that some of the quotes

were slightly amended to rectify

grammatical errors, however the

integrity of the original statements

has been maintained throughout.

It is hoped that the researchers at

LJMU are seen by the Liverpool music

community as active and supportive

partners of their community and we

hope that this project is just the

start of many more in the future.

This research project produced a rich

data set and further analysis of the

data is encouraged in the future.

The dataset used in this analysis

is open sourced and is available for

further analysis to be undertaken by

interested parties in the future.


Photography ©

Michael Kirkham


4.0

FINDINGS FROM

ONLINE SURVEY &

PUBLIC DISCUSSION


The following chapter details responses to both

our online survey and data harvested at our

Liverpool, Music City?’ public consultation

event, as outlined in the Research Methodology.

The central themes that emerge within each

of the five areas are explored and delivered

through a selection of quotes from members of

the Liverpool Music Community in relation to

each section (a full open source data set is

available at liverpoolmusiccity.co.uk). The role

of this project has been to listen, providing a

much needed platform for a community to share and

reflect upon its collective experience.


The headline data below (Table 1) shows the huge

amount of responses collected. The passion with

which the music community has embraced the project

has been welcome and the breadth and scope of

the ideas, experiences and reflections that come

through over the following five sections shows a

community ready to play a key strategic role in

its future development.

TOTAL PARTICIPANTS

Table 1

Online

Survey

Public Discussion

4th May 2017

TOTAL

RESPONSES

TOTAL

COMMENTS

Music In The City

56

55

110

167

Music Tourism

52

49

101

117

Artist Development

49

64

113

164

Music Industry Hub

45

47

92

113

Music Education

43

47

90

121

Other Issues

35

N/A

35

35

Other Ideas

32

N/A

32

31

GRAND TOTAL

312

264

573

749

Key:

Total Responses = Total number of responses to each question

Total Comments = Total number of comments made i.e. an individual

response often included a comment on more than one topic.


4.1

Music in

the City

What do you think are the main challenges facing

live music in the city and what do you think could

be done to help address them?

72 62 11

STRATEGIC ISSUES AROUND

MUSIC IN THE CITY

ISSUES AROUND

PROPERTY & LAND

A NEED TO DEVELOP

& EDUCATE AUDIENCE


10 9 3

BETTER SUPPORT OF

BRAND DEVELOPMENT

BETTER SUPPORT

FOR MUSICIANS

BROADEN THE

MUSIC OFFER


4.1

Music in

the City

Property Challenges and Agent of Change

Given the starting point and motivations behind

this project, it is perhaps no surprise that

issues surrounding property, the closure of venues

and wider challenges of the built environment

– such as noise complaints and developer power

– are the most consistent issues cited by the

music community when considering the challenges

to Liverpool’s live music culture. There is

also an appetite for greater clarity around

the overall ambitions for areas of the city in

which live music and club culture thrives; the

idea of allowing these areas to be filled with

residential developments, inevitably leading to

flash points such as those we have witnessed

already, seems ill-judged at best. There needs

to be a more detailed understanding of the role

music venues play in the local ecology and, the

idea of Liverpool adopting the Agent Of Change

principle – ensuring developers have an obligation

to soundproof new developments adequately – gains

consistent support.


“I won't be the only person to say

that competition between venues and

developments driven by increases in

the cost of land and rent has been onesided,

and that trend doesn't seem likely

to reverse any time soon. The Council,

the Mayor, and Metro Mayor must stay in

touch with venues and artists and, at the

very least, enter into dialogue with them

over future development in creative areas.

At best, perhaps some kind of cultural

pledge (in the same vein as the 'University

City 2020' aims) that would guarantee an

affordable niche for venues and artists is

possible.”

Stuart O’Hara, Musician


“The main challenges facing music venues in

Liverpool, and indeed any city of culture, is the

fact that music venues are constantly being

threatened with closure. Often because of the sound

disturbance, unruly behaviour or other 'trouble'

that venues might bring. However, in recent years

venues have been threatened with closure due to

attracting people and students to their area and

therefore making the area desirable. This problem

of gentrification is fairly new, but, it's happening

incredibly fast and venues across the country are

being replaced with Starbucks, student flats etc. The

Council need to stop this from happening – new laws

need to be put into place for venues to be protected.”

Katherine Cantwell, Heavenly Recordings


“Venue noise versus residential

developer – there needs to be better

co-operation in terms of licensing,

sound insulation (on both sides), as

well as increased communication [and]

clarity from the city on a planning

level in terms of city zoning. [There

has been a] pushing aside of all

the venues from Ropewalks to the

Baltic to make way for commercial

[developments], then the Baltic is

starting to fill with residential

[developments] – what/where next?”

Anonymous, Music Business Worker.

“There is no clear line of

communication between developers and

venues.”

Rory Ballantyne, Technician and

Broadcaster

“Agent of Change needs to be adopted

across Liverpool.”

Becky Ayers, Liverpool Sound City

Chief Operating Officer

Music venues should be recognised by

the Council and government as very

different from regular bars – more

as a cultural destination – and given

appropriate, separate regulations.”

Clarry Mowforth, Venue Manager,

Invisible Wind Factory

“Development of accommodation blocks,

student or otherwise, have seen us

lose places such as The Kazimier

and the rise in accommodation being

built within the Baltic Triangle now

jeopardises the Baltic's future as a

live music hub within Liverpool due

to noise restrictions.”

Erin Culling, Audience Member


4.1

Music in

the City

Strategy and Support

It is clear from the data that the Liverpool music

community needs assistance and support to be able

to survive and flourish. The current situation

is far from healthy and is unsustainable. But,

reassuringly, there is an appetite within the

sector to work collectively; both in terms of

collaboration between music organisations and

businesses, and collaboration between the sector,

the city, universities and other key players.

Future strategies around developing music in the

city need to have the sector – at all levels, from

the grassroots upwards – at the table.

“How do we redefine ourselves as a city? Find a

balance, harness what we have and can have, as

well as what is inevitable. Evolving more. Ensuring

we can adapt to change. Unify – use the collective

voice. Make our ideas transferrable – clear

messages that convey and support the importance

we place on arts, music and culture.”

Daniel Martindale, Venue Manager and Musician


Photography © 2.2 John Johnson

“Venues need to join together and

push for protection.”

Anonymous

Liverpool stands in the precipice

of opportunity but has a history of

shooting itself in the foot. Don’t

destroy the possibilities.”

Marc Jones, Medication

“There seems to be very little

support for the upkeep of venues

(aside from commercial ones – even

then, they're struggling) and recent

events have seen the city support

development of commercial outlets

rather than [support] the maintenance

of cultural significance.”

“Working together is key. It's

getting over this idea of

competition. The most convincing and

persuasive way to prove that arts,

culture and music is worth investing

in is presenting a united front.”

Anonymous

Liverpool is small and, as a result

of that, there is competition between

similar events. Could we put that

to one side for a common cause?

Hopefully.”

Bill Price, Camp and Furnace

Chris Meehan, Sentric Music


4.2

Music

Tourism

Do you think Liverpool makes the most of its music

tourism offer and what could be done to improve it?

We need to develop

the offer & find

better/new ways

to communicate the

experience

A need for a new

strategy

& statistics

Taxes & Monetary

Support

66 23 7

NEED TO DEVELOP

STRATEGY & MARKETING


14 7

DEVELOP BEYOND THE HERITAGE OFFER

AND REPRESENT THE CURRENT MUSIC SCENE

OTHER


4.2

Music

Tourism

Developing and Communicating the Experience

The project data shows an overwhelming consensus

around the need to develop Liverpool’s music

tourism experience. This would see the city build

on its existing offer – heavily based on The

Beatles and a ‘nostalgic’ view of music tourism

– and much more closely integrate the city’s

buoyant, 365 days-a-year live music scene and

vibrant niche festival offer. Once developed, this

vision needs new marketing platforms and digital

techniques to communicate the offer effectively

locally, nationally and internationally to a

diverse range of potential visitors.

Market…

“Link big hitting tourist attractions to the

everyday. Calendars, listings and maps that

are universal, not run by one section… but

by an almost anonymous body. It's about

promoting the personality and emerging

leftfield of our city.”

Nick Booton, Designer


Capitalise and connect…

“There are three main areas:

1. Capitalise on festivals and big events by linking

the grassroots music more effectively.

2. Make the "everyday" music offering more visible

to non-music tourists

3. Fragmentation is the biggest barrier to presenting

a citywide music offer for visitors.”

Barry Dallman, Musician’s Union Official and

Musician.


Photography ©

John Johnson


“If I think of music tourism in

Liverpool, the only thing I'm aware

of is The Beatles and even that seems

outdated. There needs to be some form

of connection to the underground and

grassroots events and experiences.”

Karis Griffiths, Venue Owner and

Freelance Events

“The challenge is to merge the past

with the present in a way that is

innovative and forward-looking rather

than giving the impression of a

nostalgia-fest.”

Andy Von Pip, Music Journalist

“[We need] joined up thinking.

People visit for The Beatles and the

football – direct them off the beaten

track to watch new artists, [attend]

nights and events, and experience

Liverpool's culture and creativity.”

Christina McKenna, Music Lecturer

“There's loads of potential still

untapped – people who like The

Beatles visit the city. They are

music fans. As well as the usual

tourist offer, there should be

alternatives promoted as part of

the identity of the city. The

main festivals and venues need to

work closely together to achieve

a critical mass of promotional

activity that lifts the programme and

attendances to higher levels.”

Anonymous

“[We need] one central social media

platform to search for gigs in the

city.”

Helen Maguire, Venue Owner, Maguire’s

Pizza Bar

“There is not enough widely available

information about current music

venues and live acts, only in

music magazines and posters around

Liverpool. Liverpool as a whole

doesn't showcase its music enough to

tourists or the general public.”

Anonymous

“Again, The Beatles dominates, and

press coverage of the full range of

musical activity within the city is

very limited. If the most current and

most creative music-making coming out

of the city was put on the map via

decent journalism on a local but also

on a national/international level,

the outside perception of Liverpool's

music scene, as being all about The

Beatles and a scattering of other

fairly successful pop/rock bands,

could be changed.”

Neil Campbell, Musician

“A properly coordinated and

communicated approach and offer would

have much greater impact, including

economic impact, and help maximise

the potential of being a designated

Unesco Music City.”

Anonymous


4.3

Artist

Development

What are your thoughts on how well new musical talent is

developed in Liverpool and what else could be done to

support emerging talent?

Issues around

access to

(and

availability

of) space

A need for

greater

co-ordination

& diversity

Finance

pressures

Time &

combinations

Platforms

& hubs

Investment

25 21 7 24 8 7

A NEED FOR MORE TIME, RESOURCES

& SPACE TO DEVELOP

A LACK OF ARTIST DEVELOPMENT

INFRASTRUCTURE


Marketing,

PR & listings

Understanding

value

& business

Promotion

of talent

13 7 5 24 23

A NEED FOR BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT,

MARKETING & PROMOTION

OTHER

EDUCATION

& ADVICE


4.3

Artist

Development

Time, Resources and Space

Artists have always needed time and space to

develop their craft and a successful music city

will be one in which an artist is afforded such

commodities, alongside structured and innovative

development programmes and artist-friendly city

policies. Our data suggests there is work to do

in this area. There is also the ever-constant

tension between music viewed as a creative,

cultural output and as a financial commodity.

For Liverpool to fully realise its position as a

global music city, music needs to be considered

more broadly than purely being viewed in economic

terms and tourist spend. There is a need to open

up access to Liverpool’s music culture – both

in terms of audiences and artists – to people

of all backgrounds. There is also a strong sense

of a stark financial challenge to artists at all

levels; the market failure of the music industry,

a lack of paid gigs, low attendances and the

ongoing influence of pay-to-play gigs make it more

difficult than ever to gain a foothold in the

sector.


Greater Co-ordination, Knowledge Development and

Diversity…

“There are key people and companies that do a

great job here but much more needs to be done to

support local talent and small businesses and provide

more networking opportunities, cross-regional

support and awareness of the city’s vibrant music

scenes and industry connection. The same funding

goes to the same folks and is often squandered on

bands and projects that have zero realistic potential

of making any kind of foothold in the industry. There

needs to be a fairer, more democratic way of allocating

funding, and raised awareness of access to

these materials to all involved in the region's music

business, with equal support given to a much broader

array of projects and musical genres than is currently

given.”

Jamie Otsa, Promoter and Music PR


Photography ©

Nata Moraru

“Our biggest problem is a lack of diversity.”

Shaun Ponsonby, Music Journalist


“Artist development relies on access.

Measuring new talent is important

but the biggest issue is reaching out

to all artists. We need mentoring,

better education on the enormous

potential of collaboration and

research affecting policy. Right

now, the music 'scene' and music

'business' feel too disparate – hence

[there are] some group fears of

them not working well together i.e.

quashing of creativity and monetising

creativity.”

Aoife Robinson, Fundraising and

Development

“Actually, things like Merseyside

Arts Foundation and LIMF Academy

do a great job at development and

over the past few years it's shown,

with more industry eyes on artists

up here than in years. Plus the

festival scene is good which helps

with artist/audience development.

It's the venues beyond all else that

need support. Some music industry

wide frequent (quarterly?) meetings

would be helpful though – the thing

that lets down bands is knowledge of

the nitty gritty like PRS, royalties,

licensing, touring et al (which

admittedly Sentric are posting some

great information on) that would be

super helpful and easy to implement.”

Andrew Ellis, Artist Consultant and

Manager

“More conscious effort for

representation of different

socioeconomic identities. More

opportunities to grow organically, to

fail, experiment. Artist development

should not be framed only in

'financial success' terms.”

Jon Davies, Musician and Promoter

“New music in Liverpool right now

is very middle class – more working

class artists and those from modest

backgrounds need support, and they

aren't getting it.”

Anonymous

“The Liverpool music community is

very narrow and has been for a long

time. It is predominantly white,

straight, male and band-orientated.

Though the likes of Bido Lito! have

improved music coverage in the city,

as well as started discussion about

improvement, it is still painfully

slow in its development. Women are

not encouraged, BME artists are

not encouraged, certain genres are

not encouraged. As a result, they

will not apply to play festivals or

to write for Bido Lito!/GIT, they

will not put themselves forward for

support slots at venues (even if they

knew how to) because realistically,

is anyone going to give them a chance

when those making the decisions

aren't like them?”

Christina McKenna, Music Lecturer


Musical talent is developed through

a capitalocentric view – in part with

the emergence of LIPA as the largest

influence of the music landscape,

which contorts the community towards

artists incubated in the city for

music as career, rather than music

as experience. There needs to be

much more transparency about where

musicians come from, how capital

flows through the music industry, and

a conscious attempt to rebalance the

music scene”

Anonymous

“We need community rehearsal spaces.

Instrument amnesties. Education

about music. Advice. Ability to learn

vocational skills.”

Matthew Hogarth, Music Journalist and

Promoter


More affordable rehearsal spaces

that people can form a community

from. Spaces free for public and

bands – youth centres, recording

studios. Help around music mentoring.

Community venues.”

Louisa Roach, Musician and Merseyside

Arts Foundation


Time and Space…

“It is most necessary to allow space and

time. The challenge is how to justify that to

parties whose interest is financial rather

than cultural. Being able to measure and

demonstrate value arms people/artists with

the tools to confront that challenge.”

Al Groves, Music Producer


4.4

Music

Industry Hub

Do you believe Liverpool is a nationally/

internationally significant music industry hub,

and what could be done to encourage new music

businesses to start up or relocate here?

We need more

joined up

thinking,

partnership &

co-ordinated

strategy

Central

resources &

marketing

Infrastructure

& support for

the sector

Events &

programmes

General

48 12 3 2 1

WE NEED A NEW STRATEGY

& CO-ORDINATION


17 16 6 8

BETTER DEVELOP

MUSIC OFFER

FINANCIAL SUPPORT

FOR THE SECTOR

BUSINESS

OPPORTUNITIES

OTHER


4.4

Music

Industry Hub

Strategy and Co-ordination

This work has helped to highlight the diversity of

music businesses currently operating in the city,

with a full spectrum of labels, publishers, music

manufacturers, production companies, studios,

engineers, managers, marketers, PRs, venues,

distributors, agents and musicians themselves

keen to participate in the process. There are

the starting embers of a music industry in the

city, but this urgently needs support. There

is a consistent call for a long-term strategy

to support the sector, led by the sector in

partnership with the city and our universities.

A policy framework is needed from the city

region to aid the sector’s development and it is

encouraging to see the start of this with the

commissioning of a music sector strategy report

by Culture Liverpool. The businesses here already

demonstrate the fact that, if we get this right,

a thriving music industry hub will drive jobs and

investment.

There is also a need to raise awareness of the

opportunities that are here already and a need for

more structured frameworks and opportunities to

bring the sector together. This leadership needs

to come from the businesses already based in the

city, as these are the businesses and individuals

that understand first hand the urgency of the task

at hand.


A thorough mapping exercise of the sector is also

urgently needed. Hopefully this process can be

started through the upcoming music sector strategy

report, commissioned by Culture Liverpool.

“Lots could be done – property here is already

relatively cheap, but what other incentives in the

form of tax breaks, reduced rent and rates etc.

- could be put forward to encourage location/

relocation/growth? Channel 4 and Guardian both

looking at moving out of London – music industry

could do the same. What can we learn from Media

City in Manchester for film and TV – satellite

offices? Encourage better talent, with better jobs,

better prospects, better salaries. Stop losing

graduates to London. Liverpool is not just any old

provincial city, it is a globally recognised brand

largely down to it's music export – play on that

beyond tourism. Be to London what Nashville is to

LA.”

Anonymous, Venue Owner


“As Peaches said: ‘The rules and

norms of the music industry need

to die'. I think business will

come if there's funding available.

It's definitely a hub of musicians,

producers, songwriters and music

lovers, so let's make something to

connect it all together.”

Marie, Musician and Music

Professional

“For a while I've thought that

independent labels should move out of

London to a northern city – they'd

become profitable overnight as costs

dropped! There are some interesting

music technology companies [in

Liverpool] – Sentric and Ditto, for

example. [There’s] my own company,

Freeman PR. We could perhaps create a

forum that brought these together and

highlighted their presence, in a bid

to draw [independent labels and music

businesses] in. If people coming to

the UK for business trips could see

that there are two music PR firms, a

publisher, half a dozen labels etc.

based in Liverpool, then they'd look

at spending a day here for meetings.

Sound City brings industry into the

city once a year, but do they trade

on the fact that there are major

contemporary music businesses working

day in day out here? I'm not so

sure.”

Sam Hinde, Freeman PR

Liverpool could be a music industry

hub, we have great potential, but so

do other cities. We need a strategy

and an incentive.”

Liverpool is soaked in music history

and I see now more than ever that

Manchester and Liverpool in particular

are catching up to London in terms

of development and growth. It could

be relatively cheap for new music

businesses to start up or relocate

here, and Liverpool is a really

condense city which I think always

increases the sense of community as

well as there being obvious practical

benefits. I don't think Liverpool is

necessarily a music industry hub, but

there is definitely potential.”

Erin, Audience Member

Liverpool has solid hub foundations

but a strategy that makes new music

a definitive part of the city's

regeneration plan, in the same way as

heritage music, would be beneficial.”

Mathew Flynn, Music Lecturer

“There's not a critical mass of

publishers, promoters, management,

agents in the city. They need

cultivation through start up

incentives and skills development,

starting at school and [going] through

to higher education and postgraduate

education. Funding for higher risk

ventures should be identified. The

Picket used to act as a live hub and

starting point, there's no equivalent

now.”

Anonymous, Musician

Gordon Okafor-Ross, Music

Professional


“Yes, I think it is, but there needs

to be much stronger partnerships

with the Council and other public

sector bodies. [It’s] nice to see

LJMU involved in this, as I would

suggest the universities are crucial

to developing the hub – as venues,

hotbeds for developing talent (more

rehearsal spaces for students?), and

as centres for academic research.”

Dan Copley, Audience Member

“The heritage industry overshadows

contemporary music in Liverpool.

Is it possible to formalise

informal networks? Can people work

together? The older generation are

concerned that it’s not possible

for people to collaborate and work

together – younger generation are

more optimistic. What is the music

industry? Recording, live, publishing

and musical instrument makers/sellers

and retailers, logistics etc.? Sounds

like a map of what's already here

could be useful!”

“There are some great businesses –

Sentric and Ad Lib are big employers.

We need to market Liverpool as a

music business friendly city and

support businesses to come here.”

Kevin McManus, British Music

Experience

Music resource centre required.

Events calendar to avoid clashes.”

Paul Duhaney, Africa Oye

Emma Webster, Researcher

“As a Londoner I see Liverpool as a place

with economic freedom – cost of living is

low and so [there’s] more opportunity to

create business and freelance.”

James Zaremba, Promoter and Radio Station Director


4.5

Music

Education

Do you think the Liverpool music community plays a

significant role in music education in the city?

How could this be done better?

Better

knowledge &

connections

between

sector and

schools

A need

for music

education

from a young

age

Connecting

offer,

people &

institutions

Activities &

workshops led

by the sector

Strategic

thinking

Mentoring

General

23

19

7

3

19

7

4

A NEED FOR BETTER KNOWLEDGE &

UNDERSTANDING OF HOW THE SECTOR

CAN BE INVOLVED

BETTER LINKS

& CONNECTIONS


Shows, venues

& studios

Produce

something

great

General

Central

co-ordination

Social &

economic

value

9

5

5

4 2

14

POTENTIAL NEW

WAYS OF WORKING

ENCOURAGE

MORE

DIVERSITY


4.5

Music

Education

Knowledge, Connections and Links

From a Younger Age

This project has demonstrated the desire and

appetite of the music sector to become much more

involved in music education in the city. This

is particularly evident in relation to primary

education, an area which currently sees little

sector engagement. The squeeze of music education

from the national curriculum and formal schooling

presents sector involvement as a necessity,

especially if we are going to fill a growing local

music industry with musicians and entrepreneurs

of the future. There is also a need to develop

local audiences from the youngest age and provide

a platform for artists under the age of 18 through

underage-targeted events and positive performance

opportunities with venues. And this is all before

we even begin to consider the hugely beneficial

health, social and emotional wellbeing benefits

associated with vibrant music communities.

Positive links between the NHS, support services

and the local music sector need to be further

developed and better co-ordinated, as do work

experience and support opportunities within the

local music industry.


“We have a world famous orchestra, studios,

contemporary bands... and history that

spreads across all communities. With music

being cut from school budgets, perhaps we

need to come together to provide music experience

days that schools across the city

region can sign up for sessions at (I'm a governor

on a school finance committee. Today,

they have just taken ANOTHER 40% out of the

budget for next year). There is not going to be

much arts and culture in schools in two years

time, and with some under privileged areas in

need of service, perhaps traditional and contemporary

music organisations in the city can

fill that void.”

Sam Hinde, Freeman PR


“I think if musicians went into

schools or youth centres it would

be more inspiring than if industry

bodies went in – perhaps if there

was a city run rehearsal complex

then part of the deal of being in

there could be to pay back by doing a

certain number of visits or workshops

in schools?”

Kate Stewart, Promoter

“It would be good to see all areas of

music within the city get involved

with youngsters – start individuals

off at a young age with the skills

and knowledge. They need to know that

they have options. Liverpool Girl

Geeks are making waves in the tech

industry, educating young girls that

tech could be a genuine career option

for them, I don’t see why a group

similar to this for music education

purposes wouldn’t have the same

successes.”

Erin, Audience Member

“Opportunities for young people to

get involved. Being told from a

young age that being in the industry

is a real job. Making opportunities

accessible to all, no matter what

backgrounds.”

Karis Griffiths, Venue Owner and

Freelance Events

“Having role models to aspire to is

so important, getting music industry

to speak is an easy thing that music

organisations can do.”

Becky Ayers, Liverpool Sound City

Chief Operating Officer

“More placements in music businesses

should be available to young people.

Mentors.”

Keith Ainsworth, Photographer


“The education system is failing… we need alternative

structures that grow from the voluntary sector

working with music industry at all levels through

mentoring, placements and opportunities.”

Bryan Biggs, Artistic Director, The Bluecoat

“Children need to be able to follow their own

creativity. Liverpool needs more hubs to facilitate

creative endeavours.”

Yousef, Circus

“We need funding for venues to host underage gigs.”

Helen Maguire, Venue Owner, Maguire’s Pizza Bar


5.0

ROUTES FORWARD


This project has been an exercise in listening,

in engaging the music community in conversation,

harvesting ideas and experiences and gauging the

sector’s appetite to take its place at the centre

of a collective new approach to music policy in

Liverpool. The process has demonstrated – with

fervour, breadth and volume – a music community

insisting on being part of a new collaborative

approach. This is also evidenced within the

dataset, with the need for greater strategy and

co-ordination consistently emerging as a prevalent

theme in each of our five areas of focus.

The original ‘Liverpool, Music City?’ Bido

Lito! article called for a new organisation, an

independent Music Office run by Liverpool’s music

community, for the good of Liverpool’s music

ecosystem. A completely democratic and transparent

entity, run by a nominated and elected committee

of representatives from across the Liverpool

music sector. It would not serve self-interest.

It would be a truly honest broker. It would not

be run by the Council, but work with the city and

our universities to bring about positive change

and develop innovative music policy that sees

music valued and prioritised across all aspects

of city life. Whatever the structure of such an

organisation and the specific remit, we have

demonstrated as a sector we are ready to raise to

the challenge.


Following our ‘Liverpool, Music City?’ event on

4th May 2017 – which has provided the data for

this project – Liverpool City Council (through

Culture Liverpool) commissioned BOP Consulting

to produce a report on the music sector of the

city. The report seeks to “outline the importance

of the sector to the city, provide an analysis

of how the sector currently operates and suggest

ways of enabling it to reach its potential to meet

City and City Region priorities.” (Liverpool City

Council)

We welcome this move from the city and await the

report’s findings and suggestions - due in the

coming weeks - with anticipation.

This project has demonstrated that the music

community is ready to take its seat at the table,

to work in collaboration with the city and craft

a new future for Liverpool, with music rightly

embedded at its heart.


6.0

APPENDICIES

To access the full set of appendices, visit

liverpoolmusiccity.co.uk


6.1

Project launch via

Bido Lito! Magazine article

LIVERPOOL, MUSIC CITY?

Call to action piece written by Craig Pennington

in Bido Lito!, the Liverpool independent music and

culture magazine. Initially published on Thursday

23rd March 2017:

Is Liverpool really a global music city? Ahead of a public

discussion at Constellations on 4th May and a research project into

the health of Liverpool’s music ecosystem conducted by LJMU, Craig

G Pennington makes the case for a Liverpool City Music Office, run

by us – the city’s music community.

On 17th February 2017, the world’s first Music Tourism Convention

took place in Liverpool. Drawing in speakers and delegates from

Tennessee to Berlin, Amsterdam to Jakarta, Perth to Pontypridd,

the event provided an opportunity for cities around the world to

share their knowledge and experience of utilising music as a tool

in attracting the tourist buck to their shores. The event was broad

and enlightening; from blues trails across the southern states of

the USA to grassroots organising in Paraguay, it re-imagined the

role of music and tourism in struggling city districts.

The view many of these visitors held of Liverpool (or the version

of the city positioned at the event) was striking; our city as a

beacon, a world-class music tourism destination and a truly global

music city. But, is that really the case? True, our city has a

world-class music heritage, as well as a bubbling music tourism

industry selling that version of itself, but is Liverpool really a

global music city today?

At Bido Lito! we have consistently lamented a lack of joinedup

thinking and strategic planning around music in Liverpool.

Cities across Europe – Utrecht, Groningen, Mannheim to name but

three – with little or no music heritage, invest heavily in

specific departments to support and develop music in their city.

This support is considered and planned across artist development,

music education, music business development, music-friendly city

policies, city planning, tourism – practically each and every

element of city life – to ensure that music can flourish, bringing

its associated social, cultural and economic benefits to the city.

And, importantly, this support is developed and implemented in

partnership with the city’s music makers, educators and industry.

We believe that the time has come for this to happen in Liverpool.


At the end of 2015, Liverpool was awarded the status of UNESCO

City Of Music “…due to music’s place at the heart of Liverpool’s

contemporary culture, education and the economy – from the vibrant

live music scene to tourism, music management courses and digital

businesses”. According to UNESCO, the award is intended, “…to

focus cultural policy and activity in relation to music in the

city, delivering a more joined up and visible music offer.” Over a

year on, and despite the best efforts of a small number of underresourced

individuals, this agenda is yet to kick in. Like many

music organisations in the city, we see the need to embrace this

moment. This is an opportunity to rethink what music means to

Liverpool and create a new, community-led approach to music policy

in the city.

We all know that Liverpool City Council faces a precarious

financial future. Mayor Joe Anderson confirmed at February’s

Culture Sector Consultation that the austerity agenda is on course

to result in a £470 million real term loss to the city between 2010

and 2020. Council tax revenues remain painfully lean; Liverpool

has 70,000 more people than Bristol but receives £38million less

in council tax revenue because of lower property values. It is

unrealistic to expect the City Council to provide strategic

leadership around the city’s music agenda when such acute pressures

exist on them to provide core services. They are also detached from

the music culture that we, as a community, intimately understand.

Leadership needs to come from the people best placed to deliver

it; us, the music community of Liverpool. We need a Liverpool

City Music Office; a strong, independent voice that can champion,

support, and ultimately, invest in music in the city.

But first, we need to ask some honest questions. What does music

really mean to Liverpool in 2017? How is it valued? How healthy is

Liverpool’s music ecology? Is Liverpool’s Music Tourism offer truly

world-class and what role does new music play within it? In terms

of its policies around noise, planning and the role of music in the

built environment, does Liverpool have a global music city outlook?

How good are we at developing the next wave of artists in the city?

Is Liverpool an international hub for music business? How joined up

is the city’s music industry and music education offer?

Fundamentally, what is the future of music in our city? Who is

protecting it and who is fighting for a future with music at the

centre of the civic agenda?


When we think of the numerous and various flash points over the

years Bido Lito! has been active, it is hard to make the case

for Liverpool – in terms of the built environment, at least

– to be considered a city with music truly at its heart. From

noise abatement notices to planning decisions, and fracas around

busking to council rates fallouts, venues such as The Kazimier,

Static Gallery, 24 Kitchen Street, Constellations, MelloMello,

Wolstenholme Creative Space, Nation and a whole raft of others have

had their run-ins with the city. The particular issues at play

across each of these situations are diverse and specific, but what

is universal is the situation that results; a venue pitched against

the bureaucracy of the City Council.

This doesn’t work for anyone, least of all the venues concerned.

It also does little to help the council understand the subtly of

the issues at play and the potential impact on our city’s music

ecosystem. Because the reality is that there are few areas of

civic life that don’t have an impact on music in the city, a point

referenced in The Cultural Value of Live Music report – produced

by Dr Adam Behr, Dr Matt Brennan and Professor Martin Cloonan of

Glasgow and Edinburgh Universities – “licensing, noise abatement,

skills and training, policing, health and safety, highways… lots of

areas have a huge impact on live music that don’t necessarily refer

directly to it.”

We need a Liverpool City Music Office to act as an honest broker,

a positive mediator between the city and the music community. This

organisation will navigate the bureaucracy of the City Council

on behalf of the music community, but also work with the council

to help them understand the broad ranging impacts of policy

and decision making on the city’s music culture. The Liverpool

City Music Office will lobby the council positively, and work

in partnership with the council (but not for them) on behalf of

the music community to pre-empt flash points before they occur,

ultimately seeking to create a situation where Liverpool truly is a

city with music at its heart, considered and prioritised across all

aspects of civic life.

The characteristics of the challenges we face are specific in their

nature to our city, but on the whole not unique. According to the

Live Music Rescue Plan, commissioned by the Major of London, “35%

of London’s grassroots music venues have been lost since 2007”.

Bristol’s Live Music Census, completed in 2016, celebrated the

fact that “live music generates £123m of revenue towards the local

economy”, but pointed out that “50% of the city’s music venues were

affected by development, noise or planning issues.” Furthermore,

at the time of going to print, Live Music Exchange embarked on the

first UK Live Music Census, a move to quantify for the first time

the nationwide challenges the industry is facing, and inform policy

to help it flourish.


The work of UK Music and The Music Venues Trust around the ‘Agent

Of Change’ principle has been positive too. The principle revolves

around the commonsense idea that a person or business responsible

for a change (i.e. a new building development) is responsible

for managing the impact of the change; meaning that an apartment

block to be built near an established live music venue would have

to pay for soundproofing, while a live music venue opening in a

residential area would be responsible for the costs. This is a work

in progress though and has yet to be fully enshrined in UK Law.

Liverpool can be – and needs to be – a national leader in adopting

the principle, given the unique role music plays in our city’s

social, cultural and economic fabric.

I have written on various occasions that our city’s small and

medium-sized venues are the maternity ward of Liverpool’s music

ecosystem. It is a point that’s reiterated in The Cultural Value

of Live Music report: “It is these smaller spaces that provide

both performance and social spaces for rising acts. They feed into

an area’s ‘local character’ – its musical history – in a way that

makes them difficult to replace. This social aspect of independent

venues, along with the relationships that derive from it, is the

seed-bed from which a town or city’s musical reputation grows.”

Yet, in Liverpool – and gentrifying cities around the western world

– they are the spaces most under threat.

And this issue scales right up to the top of the live music food

chain. Liverpool’s Echo Arena is owned by Liverpool City Council:

it is the property of the city. Arenas around the country are

reliant on small venues to incubate and develop the talent of the

future, a point not lost on Guy Dunstan of the National Arenas

Association: “Where the support is needed is at the smaller end

of the scale and at the grassroots level. Because we’re reliant

on artists being developed through that network and scaling up to

arena acts.” Liverpool, along with other arena venue cities across

the UK, needs a flourishing live music scene to fuel their live

arena schedules of the future.

Liverpool is a city at a crossroads. Devolution will broaden the

scope of what Liverpool can mean in many ways and, in a post-Brexit

UK, we will sit as an outward looking, internationalist city in an

increasingly isolationist country. We are in a global competition

for bright young minds and our music culture is key to keeping the

best of those here and attracting the best from around the world.

It is our way of selling the dream, a point again emphasised in The

Cultural Value of Live Music report: “A strong music community has

also been proven to attract other industrial investment, along with

talented young workers who put a high value on quality of life, no

matter what their profession.”


The challenge is set for our city, and I believe the challenge

is set for us, the music community, to seize the opportunity

and create positive change. As The Cultural Value of Live Music

document puts it: “Policymakers could better account for the

cultural and economic output of small venues. Awareness of the

value of live music to their towns and cities if often reflected in

major developments whose main beneficiaries are larger businesses

or other sectors (notably the service industry). Many local

councils appreciate the need for a more ‘joined up’ approach but

this has long been voiced without being consistently implemented.

Competition between cities is intense and whilst this drives

significant investment in infrastructure projects, one of the

side effects of such regeneration can be a tougher environment for

venues without the commercial or political wherewithal to quickly

adapt to gentrification”.

In her opening address to the Music Tourism Convention in February,

Sally Balcombe, the CEO at Visit Britain, enthused that “Our goal

is to make the UK the number one music tourism destination in the

world.” Given our obvious head start with the Fab Four, Liverpool

is well placed to benefit handsomely from this vision. The Beatles

are a fabulous conversation starter, an initial motivation to

convince a would-be tourist that Liverpool should be the next stop

on their global trip list. There is an opportunity to leverage The

Beatles to broaden the spread of would-be visitors to the city. We

see this each year with Liverpool Psych Fest; 70% of the festival’s

annual audience comes from outside the North West and, of that, 30%

comes from abroad. The fact that the festival happens in Liverpool

is an additional motivating factor for the incoming audience;

they will check out The Beatles Story and sample the rest of our

city’s offer during their trip. But how, as a city, can we do this

better? How can we join up the city’s diverse music festivals and

vibrant ‘seven nights a week’ music offer with the tourist dollar,

yen or euro? Currently, with a lack of cohesive and collaborative

thinking, the city is missing out.

It is also important that we plan for and understand the changing

face of the modern traveller. The Airbnb phenomena tells us

something about the motivations of the millennial tourist. People

want to go beyond the headlines, off the beaten tourist track and

experience the places they visit like a local, enjoying a truly

authentic, immersive experience. The Beatles may help to bring

someone here in the first place, but it’s the experience people

have when they are here that matters. So linking up the city’s

fantastic day-to-day music offer with tourism makes complete sense

– especially if we want them to come back. The millennial traveller

will be the principle tourist in 20 years time. We need to get this

right.

Beyond live music in the city and music tourism, there are a number

of key elements that are central to our status as a global music

city: Artist Development, Music Business Development and Music


Education. These are areas in which the Liverpool City Music

Office will be proactive, instigating change. Here are three

points that I feel need to be addressed:

1) How well do we develop new musical talent in Liverpool?

True, there are higher education and university institutions

that successfully develop talent in a formal academic setting.

Projects and organisations such as LIMF Academy and Merseyside

Arts Foundation (to name but two) have played a fantastic role

over recent years in helping artists to navigate their way to

the next stage in their career and understand the changing

face of the business they are ploughing into. But, there is

scope for much further growth and development in this area,

opening up such opportunities to a wider range of artists. A

vibrant Liverpool City Music Office would empower organisations

working with emerging talent to expand their activity, opening

up access to artist development services to all of our city’s

musicians. We need to better understand what musicians need,

what support is required to empower artists, helping them

to develop in a way that fits with the creative vision of

what they wish to achieve. We need to marry up artists more

productively with local, national and international music

industry infrastructure. We need to invest in open source

resources for collaboration and wider development of the music

ecosystem.

2) Is Liverpool a global music industry hub?

Because, if we truly are a globally significant music city, it

needs to be. There are numerous international music businesses

based here, but there could be more. Many, many more. We need

to better understand the music businesses that are based here,

how they can be supported to grow, and how they can be marketed

internationally. We need to target new music business that can

be encouraged to come and make Liverpool their home. We need

to understand how we can make Liverpool a world-class music

city to base a music business in. In a digital, interconnected

world the opportunity is there. Globally speaking, Liverpool

is comparatively cheap to live and do business in – this is

certainly the case in comparison to London. If we get our

strategy right and can make Liverpool a truly great global

music city, the sales pitch to encourage music businesses to

base themselves here will be an easy sell.

3) What role does Liverpool’s music community play in music

education in the city?

True, universities and higher education institutions have made

great strides over recent years, embedding their courses and

cohorts within the fabric of the city’s music industry. But,

does this extend to our city’s schools? It needs to. It is

in school when the music bug really takes hold. Children in

Liverpool city region schools today are the musicians, moguls,


mavericks and music-obsessives of tomorrow. We need to bring

schools and the Liverpool music community much closer together,

developing deep and productive relationships that will have an

ongoing positive impact on the lives of young people, and the

music fabric of the city, for years to come. Again, there are some

amazing organisations working in this area. The Liverpool City

Music Office will empower these organisations to expand their

activity, improve access and increase their impact, for the good of

the city.

It is imperative to reaffirm the point that this vision for a

Liverpool City Music Office is inherently different; it will be run

by Liverpool’s music community, for the good of Liverpool’s music

ecosystem. It will be completely democratic and transparent, run by

a nominated and elected committee of representatives from across

the Liverpool music sector. It will not serve self-interest. It

will be a truly honest broker. It will not be run by the council,

but will work with the council to bring about positive change

and develop innovative music policy that sees music valued and

prioritised across all aspects of city life.

The ideas set out above are merely a starting point. They are a set

of key areas in which we believe the Liverpool City Music Office

needs to be active, working towards positive solutions. But the

agenda needs to come from you, Liverpool’s music community. We

all need to feed into the vision for what the Liverpool City Music

Office will be.

In order to begin this process, we will be hosting ‘Liverpool,

Music City?’ on 4th May at Constellations, in partnership with

Liverpool John Moores University. The event will be an opportunity

for the music community to come together and share their ideas

around what the Liverpool City Music Office will be, the functions

it will perform and the agenda it will pursue. It will also be

the starting point for a new piece of academic research by LJMU,

looking at the health of Liverpool’s music ecosystem. In advance

of the event, please visit liverpoolmusiccity.co.uk and share your

views and ideas about the issues currently facing music in our

city.


Photography ©

Stuart Moulding


6.2

Digital Survey launched

– 27th March 2017


Digital research survey (via Survey

Monkey) created by Jan Brown and

embedded onto liverpoolmusiccity.

co.uk website to collect initial

comments resulting from the article

in Bido Lito! The digital research

survey was launched on Thursday 27th

March 2017.

Digital Survey Structure:

LIVERPOOL, MUSIC CITY?

Please share with us your views and

ideas about the issues currently

facing music in our city but don’t

feel pressured as none of the

questions are compulsory. Feel free

to answer only the bits that are

important to you.

Live Music In The City.

“What do you think are the main

challenges facing live music in the

city and what do you think could be

done to help address them?”

Music Tourism.

“Tell us your thoughts about whether

you think Liverpool makes the most

out of its music tourism offer.”

Developing New Musical Talent.

“Tell us your thoughts about how

well you think new musical talent is

developed in Liverpool and what else

could be done.”

Is Liverpool a Music Industry Hub?

“Tell us your thoughts about whether

you believe Liverpool is a music

industry hub and what could be done

to encourage new music businesses to

start up, or relocate here.”

Music Education.

“Tell us your thoughts on the role

that the Liverpool music community

plays, and could play, in music

education in the city.”

Other Important Issues.

“What other areas or issues in

relation to music in the city should

we be considering?”

Anything You Would Really Like Us

to Know About?

“Any views you would like to

share?”

Any Great Ideas?

“Any ideas, big or small, you would

like to share?”

Tell Us About Yourself

“Are you currently (tick all

that are relevant): an audience

member, a musician, a venue owner/

operator, a promoter, other (please

specify).”

Tell Us About Yourself

“In the future would you like to

be (tick all that are relevant):

an audience member, a musician, a

venue owner/operator, a promoter,

active in a music business, working

in music education, working in

tourism, other (please specify).”

Tell Us About Yourself

“Gender: male, female, prefer not

to say, other (please specify).”

Tell Us About Yourself

“How Old Are You?: under 16 years

old, 16-19 years old, 20-29 years

old, 30-39 years old, 40-49 years

old, 50-59 years old, 60-69 years

old, 70-79 years old, 80+ years

old, prefer not to say.”

Help Us Keep In Contact With You

“Contact Details: name, city/town,

email address, phone number.”

Help Us Keep In Contact With You

“Can you make it to the ‘Liverpool,

Music City?” event on 4th May at

Constellations?: yes, no, comment.”

Help Us Keep In Contact With You

“Would you be interested in being

part of future discussions?: yes,

no.”

Thank you for taking part in our

survey.


6.3

Liverpool, Music City?’

Event Structure - 4th May 2017

18:00 – Introductions from Bido Lito!

Magazine, Berlin Club Commission,

Sound Diplomacy and LJMU

18:30-21:00 – PUBLIC DISCUSSION VIA

ROUND TABLE CONVERSATION ‘PODS’.

The whole group is split into 5 sub

groups. Each group is focussed on

one of five key themes and led by

industry experts in those respected

areas.

5 POD FORMAT – 15 MINS DISCUSSION PER

POD.

LIVE MUSIC – Experts: Pamela Schobeß

(Berlin Club Commission), Rebecca

Wild (Constellations)

Academic: Jan Brown

ARTIST DEVELOPMENT –

Experts: Louisa Roach (Merseyside

Arts Foundation / She Drew The Gun),

Chris Bye (Arts Council England)

Academic: Will Stockley

GLOBAL INDUSTRY HUB –

Experts: Chris Meehan (Sentric

Music), Craig Thompson (Syndikat)

Academic: Domique Aspey

TOURISM -

Experts: Ffion Lewis (Sound

Diplomacy), Catherine Hurley (BME)

Academic: Ian Fillis

2 X ‘Industry Experts’ per pod

to start the discussion with the

participants. LJMU Academic allocated

to each pod. Academic to take brief

notes of the key themes that are

emerging during the conversation.

These themes to be input onto an

electronic mind map that is being

projected onto the wall.

At the end of each 15min discussion

participants will be asked to write

down their key thoughts onto A5

cards and hand the cards back to the

experts and academic on that pod.

LJMU academic to collect all cards

from the evening and pass back to Jan

Brown to collate.

Participants will be reminded that

if they have any further thoughts

that they can add those thoughts

to the conversation via the

liverpoolmusiccity.co.uk site under

the contribute section.

Jan Brown to input data and code for

analysis and presentation in final

report.

All data to be available

electronically to the Liverpool music

community.

MUSIC EDUCATION –

Brian Campbell (LIPA 6th Form),

Nadeen Kemp (LIPA 6th Form)

Academic: Kevin Johnston

21:00 – LIVERPOOL – UK LIVE MUSIC

CENSUS

DATA CAPTURE:

5PM: Pod Expert Briefing. Jan Brown

to hand out a summary sheet of key

issues raised via online survey to

date


6.4

Organisation

List

The following list shows a sample of the Liverpool music

organisations who have engaged with this project via the online

survey or by having representation at our ‘Liverpool, Music City?’

event on 5th May 2017. It is not comprehensive and is supplemented

by a large list of independents, freelancers and audience members.

3B Records

80s Vinyl

81 Renshaw Street

Abandon Silence

ACC Liverpool

Africa Oye

Arts Club

Arts Council England

Astral Coast Festival

Baltic Creative CIC

BBC Radio Merseyside

Beautiful Ideas Co.

Bido Lito!

Bluecoat

British Music Experience

Buyers Club

Camp and Furnace

Ceremony Concerts

Chibuku

Circus

Constellations

Culture Liverpool

Deep Hedonia

Deltasonic

Dig Vinyl

Elevator

ENRG

FACT

Fallen Industries

Fiesta Bombarda

Freeman PR

God Unknown

Harvest Sun

Hug Management

I Love Live Events

ICCaT

IFB

Institute for Popular Music,

University of Liverpool

Invisible Wind Factory

Kazimier

Leaf

LIMF

LIPA

Liverpool Calling

Liverpool International Jazz Festival

Liverpool Music Week

Liverpool Philharmonic

Liverpool Psych Fest

Liverpool Sound City

Liverpool Vision

LJMU

Maguires Pizza Bar

Make Liverpool

Marketing Liverpool

Medication

Mellowtone

Meraki

Merseyside Arts Foundation

Modern Sky

Northern Lights

O2 Academy

Open Circuit Festival

Parr Street Studios

Pirate Studios

PMS

Sentric Music

Skeleton Key

Skiddle

Smithdown Road Festival

Sound Of Music Podcast

Static Gallery

Tandem PR

The Label (Edge Hill University)

The Music Manual

Threshold Festival

UpItUp

Viper Label

VMS

War Room

Yeah Buddy


A new future for Liverpool,

with music rightly embedded at its heart.

LiverpoolMusicCity.co.uk

More magazines by this user