The Parliamentary Jazz Group responded to the reply award-winning guitarist Nigel Price received from Nadine Dorries after he called on the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport to give support to the UK’s jazz live scene as it faces a parlous financial situation following the Covid pandemic.
In a letter of the 14th February 2022, to the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, endorsed by Dame Cleo Laine and a large group of prominent musicians, educators, promoters, and media representatives, Price has drawn attention to a serious lack of funding of the UK’s grassroots jazz infrastructure.
The letter addressed 4 key points:
- Lack of accessibility to funding to those without dedicated premises and/or company status.
- Disparity in funding between large and small venues.
- The fiercely competitive nature of the Arts Council of England’s bidding process led to a higher incidence of failure amongst grassroots promoters.
- An urgent need for a simpler process to get help to these smaller venues.
A reply from the DCMS dated 18th March 2022 has left Price and the 68 signatories to his letter, all of whom are winners of the Parliamentary Jazz Awards (the UK’s most prestigious annual jazz prizes) feeling that their claims have been dismissed.
The full correspondence between Nigel and the DCMS with supporting letters from the Live Music Venue Trust, Jazz Promotion Network and Digby Fairweather can be seen here: https://nigethejazzer.com/dcms/ace
The All Party Parliamentary Jazz Group replied to the response from Julia Lopez MP