The Association of Independent Music (AIM) has announced its Covid-19 Crisis Fund is opening to further applications.
The fund was launched in April to provide financial aid to freelancers and contractors facing hardship due to lost work. Thanks to the generosity of its donors, it will now cover a greater period of lost work, extending into June/July, in addition to the initial period of April/May.
Applicants can now receive up to £1,000 for each two-month period. Receiving aid for one time period does not preclude beneficiaries from applying again for the other.
We want to make sure that we're supporting our community to keep them healthy and safe through this trying time
Paul Pacifico, CEO of AIM said: “Due to the generous support of our donors, we are now able to extend support from the Crisis Fund to cover a greater time period, which could prove crucial for many of our members and the emerging artists and freelance workers on their teams as the pandemic evolves. Hardship takes many different forms. We want to make sure that we’re supporting our community to keep them healthy and safe through this trying time.”
Almost 200 beneficiaries, including tour managers, live crew, sound engineers, producers, agents, managers, promoters and publicists, as well as label members and developing artists, have received aid to help them through the crisis so far. Those helped include freelancers working with Bonobo, FKA Twigs, Fontaines DC, Idles and Laura Marling, among others.
Joeseth Carter, tour manager for Bonobo and Jordan Rakei, said: “The live music industry, which relies on bringing people together to enjoy music, was one of the first to be impacted by Covid-19 and will likely be one of the last to return to normality.
"As a tour manager, I have been unable to work since March when restrictions on travel and bans on mass gatherings came into place. It’s difficult to envision returning to a normal work rate anytime soon, as the ongoing effects of this global crisis keep the brakes firmly on our industry. Unable to earn a living coupled with not meeting the eligibility criteria for the government’s Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) has left me with a significant strain on finances and the stress that comes with it.
"Receiving support from the AIM Crisis Fund has hugely alleviated that financial strain and given me peace of mind that I can make ends meet for a while until we can bring live music to the masses once again. I am beyond grateful for the support given to me and know that this fund has and will help many in our industry during this strange, difficult time. I can’t wait to return to work, it’s just not the same putting itineraries up in my bedroom for a tour between my bed and sofa!”
Eligible contractors and freelancers can now apply to the fund directly, or alternatively AIM members can continue to nominate. All applications can be submitted via the AIM site here: bit.ly/aimfund. AIM particularly welcomes applications from individuals from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Backgrounds (BAME), women and non-binary individuals, those who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual or Transgender (LGBT) or are registered as disabled as these groups are currently underrepresented within the music industry.
AIM and a number of its members and stakeholders have pledged contributions to the fund including: Beggars Group, Cherry Red Records, Elephant Music, EmuBands, Ninja Tune, PPL, Specific Music and SRVL. Last month, independent artist Sega Bodega released a surprise EP named Reestablishing Connection’ to raise money for the fund.
AIM, which partnered with the digital solution LightningAid to deliver funding quickly and securely, welcomes further donations, which will make a huge difference to the independent community and the whole music ecosystem. To pledge a contribution, email email@example.com
Qualifying workers must be:
*A self-employed contractor or the sole employee of their own loan-out company
*Either an AIM Member themselves or working with an AIM member business
*Or a developing artist signed to an AIM Member business
Qualifying workers will:
*Need to provide confirmatory back-up of the cancelled work for which they have lost income
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