TODAY'S TOP STORY: A new report published today estimates that 26,000 permanent jobs in the UK live music industry will be lost by the end of the year as the COVID-19 shutdown extends - about half of the sector's full-time workforce. Meanwhile, a further 144,000 'full-time equivalent' jobs - including both freelancers who work full time in live and other music industry practitioners for whom live is part of their activity and therefore revenue - will also have been wiped out... [READ MORE]
TOP STORIES Nearly 170,000 UK live sector jobs will be lost by the end of the year, industry warns in new report
DEALS Katie Melua signs to Reservoir
Warner Chappell signs X Ambassadors

LABELS & PUBLISHERS IMPALA launches Diversity And Inclusion Charter
Universal Music IPO now set for 2022

LIVE BUSINESS Former Paradigm agents launch Arrival Artists
ONE LINERS Black Rock, Arlo Parks, Blondie, more
AND FINALLY... Pelé records song with Rodrigo y Gabriela to mark his 80th birthday
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A ten step guide to artist/brand partnerships
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Nearly 170,000 UK live sector jobs will be lost by the end of the year, industry warns in new report
A new report published today estimates that 26,000 permanent jobs in the UK live music industry will be lost by the end of the year as the COVID-19 shutdown extends - about half of the sector's full-time workforce. Meanwhile, a further 144,000 'full-time equivalent' jobs - including both freelancers who work full time in live and other music industry practitioners for whom live is part of their activity and therefore revenue - will also have been wiped out.

While grants from the Culture Recovery Fund have probably saved about 10,000 jobs, the live industry says that it needs much more government support to ensure that its infrastructure and talent base isn't almost entirely obliterated by the time the shutdown is over.

The bold new stats have been compiled by consultants Chris Carey and Tim Chambers for a report commissioned by LIVE, a new trade organisation for the British live industry that has spun out of what was previously the UK Live Music Group committee within UK Music. Like UK Music, LIVE is a trade group of trade groups, bringing together organisations that represent concert promoters, festivals, venues, agents, managers and live event production practitioners.

The report is published as measures to restrict the spread of COVID-19 increase in many areas of the UK, just as the original COVID support schemes for both employees and freelancers come to an end. The replacement schemes are problematic for the live industry.

The new schemes assume one of two things: that a company has returned to at least one-third capacity since the original COVID shutdown or that newly increased COVID measures mean a company is forced by law to shut down entirely again. However, for most live companies, technically they are allowed to operate, but social distancing rules mean those operations would be nowhere near a third of usual capacity.

While the £1.57 billion in sector-specific funding provided by the UK government to the cultural and heritage sectors - a significant portion of which was distributed via Arts Council England's Culture Recovery Fund - has helped to an extent, it won't stop nearly 170,000 jobs in the live sector from disappearing. Many companies were ineligible for or unsuccessful in their bids to the CRF, and freelancers were not able to directly apply.

In a bid to mitigate the hugely negative impact on the live sector that is outlined in this report, the industry wants the UK government to offer the extended version of its new Job Support Scheme to all live music businesses, even when technically they are allowed to operate under law.

Other stats in the new report include that 76% of live music employees were utilising the government's furlough scheme at the end of August - ie one of the key schemes now coming to an end. Plus, while on average UK industries have seen 2020 revenues fall 20% as a result of the pandemic, live music industry revenues are down 81%, with almost zero income since March.

Commenting on the findings of the report, co-author Chris Carey said this morning: "From the artists on stage to the venues, and the many specialist roles and occupations that make live music happen, this research shows clearly that the entire ecosystem is being decimated".

"The Culture Recovery Fund is a help, especially to grassroots music venues", he added. "However, larger companies are going to be hit harder and without ongoing government investment in protecting this industry, the UK will lose its place as a cultural leader in live entertainment. Moreover, the skills we lose in this time will significantly hinder the sector's ability to recover and return to driving economic growth and supplying UK jobs".

Formally calling on the government for more support, Phil Bowdery of the Concert Promoters Association - one of LIVE's member organisations - said: "We were one of the first sectors to close and we will be one of the last to re-open. We are currently caught in a catch 22 where we are unable to operate due to government restrictions but are excluded from the Extended Job Support Scheme as the furlough comes to an end. If businesses can't access that support soon then the majority of our specialist, highly-trained workforce will be gone".

Meanwhile, putting the spotlight on freelancers, Andy Lenthall of the Production Services Association added: "Those who have often found themselves overlooked and left behind throughout the last six months are the freelancers and self-employed – the people up and down the country that we rely on to bring us the live experiences we love. Things are becoming increasingly desperate for a great many people in the industry and government needs to recognise that these crucial individuals need support".


Katie Melua signs to Reservoir
Reservoir has announced that it has signed Katie Melua to a worldwide publishing deal, covering her entire catalogue past and present.

"What an honour to be working with Charlie Pinder and the fantastic team at Reservoir as my new music publishers", says Melua. "I first met Charlie back in 2003 when I became a published writer at the grand old age of nineteen! His deep love of the craft is something to admire and having met Reservoir's global team I feel confident they share my enthusiasm for putting great art into the world".

Back then, Pinder was Managing Director of Sony/ATV UK. These days he's UK Head Of Creative at Reservoir. Which is why Melua said all that stuff about him. Does he remember her so fondly though? Let's find out.

"When I first signed Katie seventeen years ago, she was a very good but quite unassuming songwriter", he says. So sort of in-between, I guess. "Over the years she's developed into one of incredible poise, thoughtfulness and potency. Her new album is one of the best pieces of music I've heard in a long time. It is a genuine thrill to be working with her".

Melua released her latest album, 'Album No 8', just last week.


Warner Chappell signs X Ambassadors
Warner Chappell has announced the signing of US rock band X Ambassadors to a worldwide publishing agreement. As well as releasing their own music, the band have worked with Lizzo on a number of songs.

Warner Chappell SVP A&R, Rich Christina, says: "Many of us at Warner Chappell have known X Ambassadors for a while now, and we're so proud of all their accomplishments. They've had massive hits as artists, songwriters, and producers, and have seen big wins in the sync world. With the Warner Chappell team behind them, I know they're poised for many more years of success".

X Ambassadors add: "Relationships are everything to us, and Warner Chappell is home to many familiar faces. They really understand our craft and what we're looking to do as a band. The team has great connections, and we can't wait to tap into their incredible network of top songwriters and artists from around the globe".

The band are currently working on a new album.


IMPALA launches Diversity And Inclusion Charter
Pan-European indie label trade group IMPALA has launched a Diversity And Inclusion Charter which will impact on the organisation's own operations and committees, and also see the group seek to help its members better champion diversity and inclusion.

Inspired by the Black Out Tuesday initiative, the charter has been put together by a specific diversity taskforce. And IMPALA says that, although it has had diversity initiatives before, the new charter "marks a more comprehensive and structured approach".

The charter includes commitments to measure diversity in the independent music sector; map and share best practice across Europe; appoint diversity advocates for all IMPALA boards and committees; produce guidance and practical advice for members; seek EU funding for diversity initiatives; and to provide members with free bi-annual conscious inclusion training.

Commenting on the charter, Eva Karman Reinhold - chair of Swedish indie label association SOM and co-chair of the diversity task force - says: "Associations play an important role in shaping the climate of the music sector. IMPALA's action plan for positive change in terms of diversity and inclusion is designed to also support its members in that same aim. I believe this will be particularly helpful for independent associations, working to strengthen big and smaller music companies across Europe".

Meanwhile, artist manager Keith Harris, who advised the taskforce, adds: "It's been incredibly encouraging to witness the commitment to diversity and inclusion for the long term that has been put into place by IMPALA. I am proud to have been included in their team to help drive their change agenda forward".

And finally, Helen Smith, IMPALA's Executive Chair, states: "Inspiring change is a vital part of IMPALA's mission and this is what our charter seeks to achieve. Very much a European approach, we have focused on fundamental rights within a broad and pragmatic package which can be rolled out on a voluntary basis and adapted to each country. Keith Harris's input has been invaluable and our ongoing collaboration will help us measure and adjust as we proceed, to ensure we achieve structural and lasting change".


Universal Music IPO now set for 2022
Universal Music owner Vivendi yesterday said that it now plans to IPO its music company in 2022. That announcement came as the French media group confirmed that Universal enjoyed a strong third quarter thanks to the COVID-resistant streaming market.

Vivendi confirmed earlier this year that a previously abandoned plan to list Universal Music on a stock exchange was now back on the agenda. Prior to that, the company had said it was seeking private deals with strategic investors rather than an IPO, a strategy that resulted in the deal at the end of last year with a consortium led by Chinese web giant Tencent.

When putting the IPO back on the agenda in February, Vivendi said it anticipated the stock market listing happening by early 2023 at the latest. Yesterday the deadline was brought forward a little with the 2022 commitment.

Vivendi is seeking to cash in on renewed interest in investment circles in the music rights business caused by the streaming boom. And the good news for Vivendi et al is that the COVID-19 pandemic is having only a limited impact on that music rights business, meaning investor interest remains high.

Third quarter figures for Universal published yesterday confirmed that - while the major did see a slight wobble when the COVID shutdown first began - things got pretty much back to normal in the last three months. Or, at least, the ongoing streaming boom ensured that overall revenues continued to grow - up 3% for the third quarter, 5.1% for the first nine months of 2020 - despite some revenue streams, such as sync and merchandise, being hit by COVID.


Former Paradigm agents launch Arrival Artists
The mass redundancies at the Paradigm Talent Agency as a result of COVID-19 has led to yet another new agency being launched by former employees of the company. Agents Erik Selz, Ali Hedrick, John Bongiorno, Karl Morse and Ethan Berlin have teamed up with former Billions Corporation COO Matt Yasecko to launch Arrival Artists.

"We want to construct an environment that encourages collaboration, crossover and artistic risk-taking among our clients", says Selz. "This is not high-minded, nor a vision with tight guardrails, but rather a practical approach to a platform best-suited for the creators we represent".

Yasecko adds: "A diversity of artists yields a diversity of opportunities. Our goal isn't to corner the market on one genre; it's to be a home for unique, singular talents that we can champion".

Those "singular talents" at launch include Khruangbin, Sufjan Stevens, BadBadNotGood, Mt Joy, Nubya Garcia, Car Seat Headrest, Andrew Bird, Goose and Chicano Batman.

The new US-based firm has also announced a partnership with London-based ATC Live in Europe, offering global representation on their shared rosters.

"There is a clear space in the agency ecosystem for agile, independent companies that can provide innovative worldwide solutions for artists", says ATC Live's Alex Bruford. "The relationship between ATC and Arrival has quickly blossomed through a mutual desire to put the artists first, and we are delighted to be working together".

Arrival is the latest in a number of new agencies to be launched by former Paradigm agents. Avery McTaggart, Amy Davidman, Devin Landau, Marshall Betts and Ryan Craven launched TBA last month. Meanwhile, Patrick McAuliff and Phil Egenthal teamed up with former WME agent CJ Strock to launch Mint Talent Group, hiring former staffers from Paradigm, WME, CAA and Madison House. Not going the start-up route, Jeffrey Hasson and Matt Meyer joined UTA earlier this month.


Music Data, Discovery & Innovation panels kick off tomorrow
Tomorrow and Friday the University Of Brighton and CMU Insights are teaming up to present a series of free-to-access online panels looking at the role data plays in the music and wider creative industries, under the banner 'Music Data, Discovery & Innovation'.

It's part of a programme called DRIVA arts DRIVA, via which the university is providing support, training and funding to practitioners and businesses working at the intersection of creativity, the arts and technology.

The panels will allow those practitioners and businesses to access expert insights and knowledge about the various different ways data is impacting on the music business, in terms of rights, curation, marketing, fanbase building and business development.

The topics set up be covered are as follows...

Thursday 22 Oct
1pm: Introduction To Copyright And Ownership
2pm: The Basics Of Music Data
3pm: Organising Music Data

Friday 23 Oct
2pm: Accessing And Using Customer, Fan And Audience Data
3pm: What Does 'Data-Driven' Really Mean?
4pm: Making Money Through Data

For more information about the panels - and the wider DRIVA arts DRIVA project and the funding opportunities it offers 'coast to capital' businesses - and to sign up, go to

DRIVA arts DRIVA is a £1.3m University of Brighton research project funded by the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and Arts Council England.



Sentric Music's Black Rock Publishing has extended its deals with Mark Knight, Rodriguez Jr and Mark Jenkyns, and signed brand new agreements with Squire, Piero Pirupa, Harrison BDP and Jacky. "It's great to be able to work with such respected names", says Sentric's Director Of Electronic Music Mark Lawrence. "There are many more exciting announcements to come. Watch this space".



Arlo Parks has announced that she will release her debut album, 'Collapsed In Sunbeams', on 29 Jan 2021. "My album is a series of vignettes and intimate portraits surrounding my adolescence and the people that shaped it", she says. "It is rooted in storytelling and nostalgia - I want it to feel both universal and hyper-specific". Here's new single 'Green Eyes'.

Sleepwalkrs and MNEK have released the video for their recent single 'More Than Words'.

Das Body have released new single 'Better Half'. "This song - and the whole record really - is about discovering emergency exits from your own mortality, from your better half, or your own head", say the band. Album you say? Yes, titled 'Peregrine', that'll be out on 20 Nov.

Scarlet Soho has announced that they will release a new best of and rarities compilation, titled 'Programmed To Perfection', on 16 Nov.



Blondie have announced UK tour dates for November 2021, with support from Garbage. "Next year's UK tour is more meaningful to me perhaps than the very first time Blondie played there in the mid-70s", says Debbie Harry. "The UK has always been a special place to us, and being able to come back to perform there after sitting out most of 2020 is very exciting". Tickets go on general sale on Friday.

Check out our weekly Spotify playlist of new music featured in the CMU Daily - updated every Friday.


Pelé records song with Rodrigo y Gabriela to mark his 80th birthday
Rodrigo y Gabriela have teamed up with legendary footballer Pelé to record a song marking his 80th birthday, titled 'Acredita No Véio', which translates as 'Listen To The Old Man'.

Not simply a footballer warbling over a half-arsed track, it turns out that Pelé is actually a keen songwriter. He just never really thought to mention it. "I didn't want the public to make the comparison between Pelé the composer and Pelé the footballer", he says. "That would have been a huge injustice - in football, my talent was a gift from God. Music was just for fun".

"I wrote ['Acredita No Véio'] because when I used to play with Santos, the coach used to say that when we lost, it was the players' fault, but when we won, it was the macumba - black magic - that had helped", he goes on. "The song is joking about that - of course, macumba doesn't win games at all".

Speaking about their collaboration, Rodrigo y Gabriela add: "We are both big soccer fans. Growing up in Mexico City, we heard many stories about Pelé and the legendary Brazilian team that triumphed at the 1970 World Cup in our homeland. Imagine our surprise and delight to find out that not only is Pelé the greatest footballer of all-time, but is also a very talented singer and songwriter. It is a huge honour for us to collaborate with Pelé on the occasion of his 80th birthday".

Pelé's birthday isn't actually until Friday, but you can listen to the song now anyway.


ANDY MALT | Editor
Andy heads up the team, overseeing the CMU Daily, website and Setlist podcast, managing social channels, reporting on artist and business stories, and writing the CMU Approved column.
[email protected] (except press releases, see below)
CHRIS COOKE | Co-Founder & MD
Chris provides music business coverage, writing key business news and CMU Trends. He also leads the CMU Insights consultancy unit and the CMU:DIY future talent programme, as well as heading up CMU publisher 3CM UnLimited.
[email protected] (except press releases, see below)
SAM TAYLOR | Commercial Manager
Sam oversees the commercial side of the CMU media, leading on sales and sponsorship, and also heads up business development at CMU Insights and CMU:DIY.
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CARO MOSES | Co-Publisher
Caro helps oversee the CMU media as a Director of 3CM UnLimited, as well as heading up the company's other two titles ThisWeek London and ThreeWeeks Edinburgh, and supporting other parts of the business.
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