Wish You Were Here 2016: The Contribution of Live Music to the UK Economy, is not in itself a policy or manifesto, but more a collection of data and writings that provide evidence and support for recognition of the vital role that live music plays in relation to the economy of various ‘industries’. Though this data is not a policy within itself, it is an example of a crucial report that aims to affect policy makers, using a mixture of cold hard facts and statistics and then analysing the data in a cultural-economic context. By situating this data in such a context, the document shapes a local and national identity, placing live music and its actualisation and potential for tourism at the forefront.
The local and national impact of live music is outlined here. Produced by UK Music, it combines a coalition of writers from across the UK to collaboratively draw data. These writers, data collectors and analysts are seen as experts in their fields, and the piece reads coherently, acting as an engaging campaign to entice policy makers everywhere (it is non-specific in outlining the policy makers it is targeting) to place value on live music as a marketable and veritable source of tourism and economic reward.
As with all reports, there is an agenda to this document, and those involved are heavily involved with UK music and therefore place it at a high value. I don’t dispute this value, but am aware that evidence supporting already established ideas and matching figures to fit an hypothesis is unavoidable to some extent. I think overall, that the report does an excellent job in bringing awareness about the current economic landscape, albeit a summarised and far from comprehensive one, into play. As venues face ongoing battles with noise policies in residential areas, such a report could be crucial in potentially changing legislation in this area. The cultural and economic value could be recognised as intrinsic to any given area’s identity, and eventually be deemed more important than the rights of residential dwellers.
UK Music, (2016). The Contribution of Live Music to the UK Economy. Wish You Were Here. UK Music.