From: Sue Rule [sa_dot_rule_at_btinternet_dot_com]
Sent: 22 January
Subject: Re: How to get more live
music in the pubs !
These are worrying statistics and I agree
with all the points you raise.
However, pub landlords themselves bear
some of the blame in my experience. Perhaps you have lots of good ones in the
east of the county. But some shooting-yourself-in-the-foot behaviour I have
observed or heard about:
- booking music on the strength of what the publican or
manager likes rather than what draws a crowd in (particularly true of folk. By
which I mean pubs throwing out bands or singarounds that draw people in
because they themselves don’t like folk music.)
- booking the same act, or small selection of acts,
again and again and again “because they have a following”. Yeh, they did the
first time, but not by the twentieth time. This is nothing against the acts
booked – they are usually damn good. But it’s doing them no favours to be
doing too much within one small catchment area.
- failing to appreciate the free effort of club or gig
organisers – by doing things like:
publicising gigs adequately on the pub premises
- running out of beer
- breaking a programme of regular gigs that had taken
months to build up a following (and expecting that following to come back
instantly when they realise the mistake and try and put the programme back.)
Takes two years to build a regular audience and one week to lose
organisers in particularly seem to me to suffer from being nice people, and get
messed around right left and centre as if the venue was doing them a favour by
hosting the club. Who is doing whom a favour here? The pub that would otherwise
be empty, or the folk club that’s bringing twenty people in and paying for a
guest musician? It really does seem to me to be the case that there are far too
many publicans and pub managers who really can’t organise a piss-up in a
So I agree – support the ones who can. In my particular patch we
are extremely fortunate to have (list of good-guys). We’ve recently lost the Ivy House and Ryan’s Bar, but that was because
the pubs have closed, which is the real worry. I don’t think anyone frequentling
either of those venues could be accused of not drinking (except when the Ivy
House did its regular trick of running out of beer...)
On 21/1/09 19:50, "Dr. Beau Webber"
for forwarding :
How to get more live
music in the pubs !
Well I wish I
really knew the definitive answer to this, but I have had the quote below said
to me by three landlords/ladies :
Since generating that
graph of the fall-off in the Kentish live music (attached in case you have not
I have been soliciting comments as to
why the live music is dying in Kent.
Now I have had a number
of replies, and lots that make good sense.
But I am short of replies that
explain why the fall-off started near the moment the Licencing Act 20903 came
into force at the end of 2005 -
or more specifically, what in particular
changed that is directly causing the fall-off.
So lacking those, I am
looking for anything we can do to keep the music alive.
Now I have just had
a hopeful official reply that the regulations on small music events may be
relaxed (you should have had this as the previous email) but this will take
time to happen, so I believe we have to do what we can to keep the music
I really only have four
points, and they seem rather obvious, but we have to do them or the music will
Turn out to gigs as often
as you can manage, and particularly turn out to pubs that are having gigs for
the first time, to encourage them to have more.
Ask a neighbour or friend
along to the gig - they may like it when they thought they would not
Drink as much as you can!
- have a designated driver - I am not encouraging you to drink and
If you are worried about
losing your seat in the pub - buy two pints at once, or ask for a jug of
Your ideas please for
what else we can do !
But three landlords/ladies (starting with
Clair Hobbs in the Evenhill and later Admiral Owen) have said to me
- great gig - pity no one was
Clair was passionate about the music, but was
swept away - don't let great venues like The Wrotham Arms in Broadstairs go
the same way ....
I have been suggesting something I have seen used to good
effect, the pubs should have jugs or towers of beer you can get filled - ask
for one !
And talking of the
Evenhill in Littlebourne - they are having some Celtic music for Paddy's week
(Friday 20th Feb. 2009) so please, this is turning back into a good pub, give
it some support and we may get gigs with the like of fiddler Yves in
We have to reverse
this slide in the music :