Musicians warn industry 'could lose voice' after Brexit
Sting, Rita Ora and Ed Sheeran have joined forces to warn Theresa May a “no-deal” Brexit will put Britain in a “cultural jail”.
Bob Geldof is spearheading a campaign to warn of the impact of Brexit on the music industry, and has drawn support from artists across the country.
Geldof said: “It’s two-fold. One is the income it generates for this country, £94bn, contrast that to the NHS spend, of £115bn, almost the same.
“This will be critically damaged.
“The second reason is cultural – the voice of Britain, the genuine, global British voice is music, it has been since the Beatles.
“No one knows quite why this tiny island produces such vast reservoirs of talent but we do know the entire planet dances, eats, sleeps, and plays hard to our noise.
“That is being endangered by a recklessness which is existential and historically self-damaging.”
He said when he toured in his youth he would have to stop at borders to have patrol officers check every piece of equipment, at a huge cost, and he fears this will return.
Geldof said it comes at a time when record sales are down and musicians make very little from streaming.
Other signatories include Jarvis Cocker, Damon Albarn, Johnny Marr, former The Smiths guitarist, and Pink Floyd’s drummer Nick Mason.
The letter states: “Imagine Britain without its music. If it’s hard for us, then it’s impossible for the rest of the world.
“In this one area, if nowhere else, Britain does still rule the waves. The airwaves.
“But Brexit threatens, as it does so much else, this vast voice. This huge global cultural influencer.
“We are about to make a very serious mistake regarding our giant industry and the vast pool of yet undiscovered genius that lives on this little island.”
According to The Observer, the letter was circulated with the subject “towards a second vote”.
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