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The Great Escape: PRS man on the continued growth of live

By | Published on Saturday 15 May 2010

Elsewhere during the first day proceedings at The Great Escape, PRS For Music stats man Will Page gave a little insight into the buoyant live music sector which, his organisation has previously declared, started to outperform the recorded music sector in terms of revenues in 2008.

According to Page and his PRS stats team, 2009 was another good year for live, with revenues up an inflation beating 4%. Primary ticket sales were up 3.4% while, according to ticketing stats people Tixdaq, the secondary ticketing sector saw its revenues shoot up 15%.

Page told TGE delegates: “The UK live music industry continues to exceed expectations, especially during an economic downturn. In a week when it was shown that recorded music revenues [according to BPI stats] may be starting to turn a corner, it’s important to ‘follow the money’ and appreciate the consumers insatiable appetite for live music, with more bands and more tickets than ever before. It’s fascinating to consider that events-based industries such as live music have succeeded in growing their overall pie, whilst so much of the digital media debate is about cannibalisation”.

Though while the live sector at large is doing very well thank you very much, Page’s stats do confirm what some promoters and venue managers in the grass roots live sector will tell you, that things aren’t so rosy there. Nearly 50% live of revenues were generated in stadium and arena venues, while another 20% went to middle-sized venues and 20% to festivals, leaving the grass roots live sector accounting for just 10% of revenue. Meanwhile the festivals sector accounted for most of the market growth in 2009.

In related news, Page used TGE to announce an alliance with the aforementioned fan-generated live music website Songkick which the collecting society will be utilising to expand its intelligence on the live sector.

Page: “Songkick is one of the leading innovators in the live music space; connecting more fans with the music they love thus getting more people to more gigs. By collaborating with this technology company we can work together to identify ways to continue improving our service to our songwriters, composers and publishers. Songkick’s breadth of data will help us improve how we match what is from the smallest unsigned band right through to those hitting the UK’s stadiums”.