Jul 10, 2024 2 min read

Government should invest in long-term strategy to support young music creators, says Youth Music

Youth Music has published the results of a new survey that concludes that “young people’s relationship with music is changing”. The charity calls on government to invest in a new strategy to support young music creators and on the industry to remove barriers for those pursuing a music career

Government should invest in long-term strategy to support young music creators, says Youth Music
Photo credit: Giulia Spadafora via Youth Music

Music charity Youth Music has called on the new UK government to invest in a long-term strategy to support young music creators, which should include a reimagining of formal music curriculums and more support for grassroots youth and community music organisations. The music industry, meanwhile, “must prioritise inclusion and safeguarding cultures” to remove barriers for those pursuing a career in music. 

These demands come off the back of a new survey of more than 2000 children and young people. A report based on that study says that making and listening to music “now tops the list of activities that Gen Z and Gen Alpha do in their spare time”, ahead of sport, social media and gaming. However, “young people’s relationship with music is changing”. 

“There are new ways of making and learning”, the report states, “whilst listening to music is becoming more bite-sized and fleeting. People feel less musical than before, and access to music - particularly in schools - has decreased”. 

Even where access to music has improved, music education often isn't preparing young people for a career in music, especially those from marginalised groups. And even when people from those groups “do make it into the music industries” they often “face discrimination, unsafe working environments and a glass ceiling”. 

In terms of better supporting those embarking on a career in music, Youth Music says - based on this study and earlier research - that “the current provision for education and work-based training beyond age sixteen is not fit for purpose” and “advice and support within the music industries is too focussed on artist and performer roles”. 

“More attention should be paid to areas with skills shortages, like technical production and offstage roles, teaching and digital technology”, it adds, and “we need a greater focus on developing enterprise and business skills, to reflect a workforce dominated by freelancers and small businesses”. 

The study concludes with three key recommendations. 

  1. The UK government needs to invest in a long-term music strategy for growth that includes grassroots youth and community music.
  2. Education providers and policymakers must re-imagine the music curriculum to improve access, relevance and progression.
  3. Industry must prioritise inclusion and safeguarding cultures.
Great! You’ve successfully signed up.
Welcome back! You've successfully signed in.
You've successfully subscribed to CMU.
Your link has expired.
Success! Check your email for magic link to sign-in.
Success! Your billing info has been updated.
Your billing was not updated.
Privacy Policy