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Tag Archives: live music

Red Days

The publishers blurb…

Challenges the conventional narratives about English popular music and
the counterculture of the late 1960s and early 1970s

“The passion, intensity and complexity of the popular music produced in
England between 1965-75 is the work of an extraordinary generation of
working class and lower middle class men and women (in alliance with a
handful of middle-class men and women) who saw in the new music the
remaking of something bigger than themselves, or more precisely,
something bigger than themselves that they could guide and shape and
call their own. In this the ?use-values? of popular music underwent an
unprecedented expansion and diversity during this period. Red Days
presents how music and action, music and discourse, experienced a
profound re-functioning as definitions of the popular unmoored
themselves from the condescending judgements of post-1950s high culture
and the sentiment of the old popular culture and the musicologically
conformist rock ?n? roll seeking to displace it. The remaking of the
popular between 1965-1975, accordingly, is more than a revision of
popular taste, it is, rather, the demolition of old cultural allegiances
and habits, as forces inside and outside of music shattered the
assumption of popular music as the home for passive adolescent

Bio: John Roberts is Professor of Art & Aesthetics at the University of
Wolverhampton. He is the author of a number of books, including /The
Necessity of Errors/ (2010), /Photography and Its Violations/ (2014),
/Revolutionary Time and the Avant-Garde/ (2015), /Thoughts on an Index
Not Freely Given/ (2016) and /The Reasoning of Unreason: Universalism,
Capitalism and Disenlightenment/ (2018).

PDF available freely online:

Ordering Information: Available direct from Minor Compositions now for
the special price of £ 10 + £2 P+P.

Minor Compositions is a series of interventions
& provocations drawing from autonomous politics,
avant-garde aesthetics, and the revolutions of everyday life.

Consultation on proposal to exempt small live music events

Department for Culture, Media and Sport

Dear Sir/Madam

We would like to respond to the public consultation on a licensing exemption for small scale live music events.

Having spent my entire musical life playing in such venues as the small pub and club, I expected the Licensing Act to have a damaging impact on the small venues where most musicians cut their teeth and some survive throughout a professional life. The Act certainly affected me that way and last year a venue I was using regularly closed, after having a Premises License application for live music turned down on the basis of a single complaint. This is a story common throughout England and Wales. Read More »

Singing in public is becoming increasing illegal, as is any live music, as the system inexorably colonises the lifeworld.

Hamish Birchall from the Live Music Forum is a good source of information. A good short summary here:

Full details and history here:

‘Live music is, like anything else which is an attraction in licensed premises, potentially a public order problem,’ he began. ‘If you start from that point of view, then it becomes clear what you must do…’ St Albans Liberal Democrat councillor Chris White, when he gave evidence to the Parliamentary Culture, Media and Sport Committee, Tuesday 14 October 2008.  Chris White is also chairman of the Local Government Association’s Culture Committee, and also their licensing spokesman.

Sign the petition against criminalising live music!

Read More »

the-day-live-music-died– Andy McSmith – The Independent
The law says that a publican can show football on a large-screen television, or have piped music blaring out, but if there is a folk singer or rapper in the pub, there has to be a special licence called a Temporary Event Notice (TEN). According to the Musicians’ Union, small venues have stopped putting on live music because managements do not want the hassle of filling out lengthy forms.”
McSmith also discusses form 696 and bemoans the lack of protest from higher profile musicians or the Music Press. These kind of laws are killing us softly.
And it is live music where music is most political and most subversive – need I say.

A new group called Resist Form 696 has formed to co-ordinate efforts against the risk assessment form and they are organising a three day event in London featuring popular bands. Here is their press release and you can learn more at their website or sign the petition online at,