Amazon announces Prime Day Live fundraiser for the UK grassroots sector

Amazon announces Prime Day Live fundraiser for the UK grassroots sector

Lewis Capaldi, Celeste and Cate Le Bon have joined forces with Amazon for livestream event Prime Day Live to raise awareness and funding for the UK's struggling grassroots venues.

Prime Day Live, presented by Amazon Music and in support of Music Venue Trust, will stream from 7-9pm this Friday, October 9 at and via the Amazon Music iOS and Android app. Each artist will perform a 30-minute set live on stage from a small UK independent music venue under threat of closure due to the pandemic.

Last week, the Music Venue Trust (MVT) issued an urgent warning to the UK government that the entire grassroots live music sector is now at “red alert status”.

Mark Davyd, MVT founder and CEO, said: “Many of the UK’s iconic grassroots music venues remain at significant risk of permanent closure, which is not just catastrophic for everyone associated with each and every venue, but for UK music culture in general. Amazon Music was one of the first donors for our COVID-19 Crisis fund earlier this year, and we’re excited they are continuing their support through this Prime Day Live event to help us raise awareness of the plight of venues and help drive much-needed donations to keep them open. Every penny helps, so we are also hugely grateful for Amazon’s donations and any further support from the public.”  

Prime Day Live will help raise awareness of the plight of important grassroots music venues that are so integral to music culture in the UK

Patrick Clifton, Amazon Music UK

Patrick Clifton, head of music, Amazon Music UK, said “Prime Day Live will help raise awareness of the plight of important grassroots music venues that are so integral to music culture in the UK, as well as raise funds to help support them. It will bring music fans closer to some of their favourite artists through an evening of great music that can be enjoyed for free at home. Seeing these artists reconnect with some of the live music venues that are a part of their musical journeys will be a special moment.”

As part of Prime Day Live, Amazon is making donations to each of the four participating music venues to support their ongoing operating costs, as well as making its second donation of 2020 to the Music Venue Trust’s #SaveOurVenues appeal  During the livestreamed event on Twitch viewers will be able to donate directly to Music Venue Trust, and Amazon has also made Music Venue Trust one of its spotlight Smile charities for the month of October.

The news comes after the first announcement on how the government’s £1.57 billion Cultural Recovery Fund will be distributed, due today (October 5), was put back by a week due to what Arts Council England described as "additional due diligence".

Via its social media accounts, the Music Venue Trust said: "Understanding the difficulty and complexity of this process for Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and ACE, and the obvious need to get it right, we appreciate why such a delay may have been necessary. It is unfortunate that the need to extend was only able to be notified to applicants with just 72 hours remaining to the decision time and date.

"A week delay may seem, at first glance, relatively immaterial, but the previously announced hard deadline of 5pm on Monday, October 5 for decisions on this essential funding, support which is the mainstay of the government’s approach to prevent permanent closures, has resulted in time limited agreements, both verbal and contractual, between venues and their landlords, breweries, suppliers and staff.

"MVT will be working with venues throughout the weekend to try to renegotiate those agreements, and to provide confidence to all concerned that the Cultural Recovery Fund process still presents the opportunity to save a large number of grassroots music venues from permanently closing."


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