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Unsigned bands are artists too!

This information was posted by the band 'silver addictive' on a web petition to highlight government discrimination against unsigned musicians in Ireland. It brings up some good points about the unsigned Irish music industry and also the international music industry in general. These points are worth mentioning again to spread this information around. Bare in mind these are Irish statistics so funding and budgets may be a lot smaller than most countries due to the smaller population.

'The Arts Council has received €61 million in funding from the Irish government, an increase of 16% or €8.5 million on last year’s budget. The Arts Council is the sole dispenser of grants and bursaries for the Arts in Ireland. The criteria, however, for all schemes and bursaries exclude one sector of the arts from applying for financial aid, unsigned bands.

Unsigned bands in Ireland are the financial backbone of the Irish music industry, contributing over €120 million a year to the exchequer and to various areas of the music industry.

We, the undersigned wish to petition the Arts Council to review their grants and awards system in 2005 to include this currently excluded sector of the industry. We also want the Arts Council to acknowledge the contribution of unsigned bands to furthering Irish arts by creating bursaries specifically aimed at unsigned bands. To date, these bursaries have catered for individual artists only.'

Petition location -

What some people don't realise (and the government refuse to acknowledge) is that working (and often unpaid) musicians in Ireland contribute a lot of money, often at their own expense, to the entertainment industry. This is a good initiative taken by Silver addictive and Co. as unsigned musicians are often discriminated against and remain unsupported because of their age, gender or interests.

Unsigned and unsupported musicians should be supported through grant systems or paid gigs by government and local venues. Unsigned musicians should be helped to grow, promote the music scene and, in time, generate more revenue for the country. We need your support.

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