JUNE | OPINION
“I see mass globalisation leading to too much
control for some organisations and platforms that
may suffocate and starve the artists and creatives”
You ‘gotta love that.
However, like many things, there is a monopoly
of control - certain promoters, agents and artists
are controlling so much of the action and the pie.
I have concerns about that. However, I don’t know
if the audience cares - as long as the offer is good.
The challenge for the likes of LIMF is to make
sure we can do our thing within this climate
- and that’s why having creative and original
ideas, an underlying purpose and considered
programming is so important. The inclusive
nature, of not just the programme but the ticket
price points, means we have something here that
is special. Lord willing, it can survive and grow, as
I believe it is something so wonderful to have in
these times of struggle, conflict and globalisation.
I feel proud that the city I call home stands
annually, offering this small taste of the opposite.
How can artists get noticed?
I work with so many developing artists and
I think it’s very important - especially if you are
independent - to do your thing, with conviction
and be diligent and persistent with who you
approach, how when and where. Fundamentally, a
music festival is nothing without the right artists
and bands, but you do need to help us find you
amidst the noise.
Why are there fewer long-lasting artists today in
I think the ability to ‘launch’ whenever you want
is a part of that problem. I don’t think 75% of the
artists are ready when they first release music. It
seems so many artists, to use a business term, are
almost ‘test trading’ for 5 or 6 years. And because
of the accessibility of people and platforms, they
often push at times when they should probably
take a bit more time to develop.
The long tail is nuts. I heard that like 90% of
music on iTunes has only 1 purchase (usually by
the person who released the track). I can imagine
Spotify will reflect a similar thing with streams.
It’s all so easy that the focus may have gone away
from development and excellence. But we are
where we are and the future greats will work a
way to take advantage of the flat nature of access
whilst still striving and working towards being
great. You just hope that they don’t go unnoticed
within the noise.
I believe the artists that cut through and last
are the ones that develop under the radar for a
while and the hype occurs because it’s undeniable.
I’m thinking Ed Sheeran, Adele, Anne Marie,
Frank Ocean etc. Obviously they had investment,
but it was about ‘growing’ what was there and not
creating it from scratch. Then they have all worked
post that point to grow year on year. What’s that
phrase - Kaizen - constant improvement.
I always use the example of Beyonce - yeah
she is doing stadiums and awing people with
how nuts she is as a performer - but she has been
getting better since she started and puts in the
work. She’s been working to be great for over 30
years. That’s the level of dedication that should
be standard. I’m not sure everyone is doing that.
Some just slide in and do the bare minimum and
hope hype or an algorithm carries them.
Any other music/festival industry observations?
I am starting to get concerned with the strain
on the greatest assets of the music industry -
the artists. I see mass globalisation leading to
too much control for some organisations and
platforms that may suffocate and starve the
artists and creatives. Then what are we all doing?
Without them creating and thriving, we all don’t
So I think we 100% need to be mindful of this
when doing whatever we are doing - at every level,
as every action we all do creates the current truth
and current and future climate. We just need to be
conscious of this.