Newquay Voice - Online and every Wednesday Only £1

Sell for Free in the Voice

It's free to sell your unused items in the Voice. No fees, no commission.

Place Your Free Ad

Buy your favourite pictures

Ordering high quality prints or digital copies is quick and simple.

More information

News Archive > General > Bands wary as lockdown presses pause on industry

Bands wary as lockdown presses pause on industry

By Jacob Double 6th January 2021

Bands wary as lockdown presses pause on industry
Local band D.M. Street have spoken out

 A Bodmin band has spoken of their ‘fear for the industry’ nearly a year after they were
last allowed to gig.

Local seven-piece ska act, D.M. Street, spoke to the Voice about how the music and hospitality sector had been decimated by the pandemic and that when live music finally
resumes, it will rely on venues still being there to host them.

John Hutchens, who is the band’s lead singer and rhythm guitarist said: “Our last gig was in Bodmin in February so we’re coming up to [almost one year] now without playing.

“Obviously we can’t rehearse at the minute either. We did a couple of rehearsals during the two lockdowns with social distancing, and with seven in a band it isn’t easy to accommodate.
“But it is not just the bands, it is the venues. They have taken a massive knock.

“I really fear for the future of the local music scene as a whole going forward. Some of these venues are struggling and possibly closing, they aren’t going to be able to pay the money for local bands.

“I have heard of bands splitting up too. There are also lots of bands and solo artists that make their money playing gigs or weddings and some of these are falling through the net in terms of getting money from the Government.”

The help from Westminster in the form of the self-employed income support scheme was only for a person’s main income. Therefore, where many local artists have part-time work on the side, the Government aren’t able to make up the money lost from gigging, meaning they have lost out on a year’s worth of potential income.

John added: “Cornwall, by its nature, has a lot of hospitality jobs anyway and there are a lot of people falling through the radar. A lot of these incomes are part-time, but they are still income, and for some are just as important as a main income.

“We are lucky as a band that we have full-time jobs but we are missing the buzz of going out and doing gigs. We write a lot of our own stuff as well, so the creativity has just gone too.”

Like most bands, D.M. Street, who once supported Madness in Minehead, should have been in the thrust of perhaps the busiest time of year with New Year’s Eve and Christmas parties, but instead are approaching one year since their last performance. When asked about when he thinks they will be back on stage in front of a live audience again, John commented: “Until a vaccine comes on stream properly, I can’t see much happening this side of summer.

In Bodmin we obviously have Alstock in July and I am hoping that will be the turning point.
“But it is all very well getting back out there again, but it depends if the venues are out there still and able to pay bands to perform.”

The singer added that he thinks we could start seeing more outside gigs, as a way of getting people back into the habit of seeing bands and also in lieu of venues being able to afford them. And he is hoping to use his other local role, as a Bodmin Town councillor, to help
achieve this.

“Bodmin doesn’t have that much of a music scene at the moment, but I am hoping that will change. As a local councillor, I want to get things going on the music front.

“I think a lot of people are re-evaluating how they do things, the great thing about the Cornish is that we can adapt. Where some venues will close I think others will open, but it will take time.

“I would personally like to see more outside gigs and festivals. I wouldn’t mind D.M. Street putting a gig on at Mount Folly. I think a lot of bands would do this sort of thing for a reduced fee or free.”

By Jacob Double 6th January 2021

Add your own comment

Spam Test
Captcha Spam Test

Please enter the text from the image

Top of Page