Freestar and Music Venue Trust launch alternative Christmas playlist to support UK music industry

Music artist’s income skew very heavily towards live performances. On average, over 65% of artist’s income has been lost as a direct consequence of Covid-19*. This could extend to over 80% for those more reliant on live performance*, specifically emerging artists who rely on developing their careers and audiences through live performances at grassroot music venues. To help support those artists most severely impacted by Covid-19, award-winning, alcohol-free beer brand, Freestar, has partnered with Music Venue Trust, to launch The Alternative Christmas Playlist.

The Alternative Christmas Playlist celebrates and supports up and coming British artists who have been deprived of opportunities to perform at grassroot music venues because of Covid-19. In addition to the loss of direct income, many emerging artists also rely on live performances to sell the majority of their merchandise and physical music. Unlike established artists, up and coming talent often do not have the security of publishing advances to fall back on.

The artists included in the Playlist were chosen in partnership with Music Venue Trust, and cover a range of music genres from across the UK. Projections of a QR code that links to The Alternative Christmas Playlist illuminated Grassroot Music Venues that these artists would usually be performing at, including Village Underground and EartH. Freestar will be donating a percentage of their Christmas sales to Music Venue Trust’s Grassroots Music Venue Crisis Fund. The fund will help Music Venue Trust prevent over 550 potential Grassroot Music Venue closures, which are homes to emerging artist throughout the UK.

Felix von Hurter, Co-Founder of Freestar said:

“Championing the next generation is what we do at Freestar, and it’s exactly what we hope our Alternative Christmas Playlist in partnership with the Music Venue Trust is going to achieve. We want our Playlist to celebrate, support and shine a light on emerging British talent who have been severely impacted by Covid-19. Although the Grassroot Venues where these artists would usually take the stage are closed, our Playlist hopes to provide an alternative platform where their talent can still shine.”

Beverley Whitrick, Strategic Director of Music Venue Trust commented:

“Everyone who runs a Grassroots Music Venue does it to support artists and 2020 has emphasised the close relationship between the well-being of the venues and the artists who perform there. We are grateful to Freestar for their support, and for prompting our team to focus on some of the artists for whom this should have been a pivotal year in our venues. We hope the playlist highlights the wealth of great music developing and we look forward to seeing these artists, and many many more, back in grassroots venues soon.”

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