‘Attitude is Everything’ – Equality in Live Music

As soon as a notification pops up on the Songkick app, or an email pings through, the mad scramble begins: check the dates, the venue, and quickly get your hands on those precious tickets before they sell out. But what if it wasn’t that easy? Thousands of disabled music fans face far less trivial problems than these when planning their next gigging venture.

Not fair, right? Shouldn’t everyone be able to go to any gig they want, regardless of their access requirements? We think so here at Songkick, and the fantastic ‘Attitude is Everything’ campaign is aiming to get more and more artists and venues on board with making live music more accessible for everyone.

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The charity has been working with promoters and festival owners for 14 years to improve access and facilities to live music for deaf and disabled fans, and over this time there has been some amazing support and improvements, but there is still a long way to go. ‘Attitude is Everything’ believe that everyone should have an equal chance to enjoy gigs and festivals – which is why they’ve launched a new online campaign this week called #MusicWithoutBarriers. We spoke to Suzanne Bull, CEO, who told us a little more about the awesome campaign:

“Our ultimate aim is to encourage more UK festivals and venues to join the 90+ who have already signed our Charter of Best Practice, but we also wanted to raise awareness around 4 key messages:

● Improving access doesn’t have to be costly

● There is a strong business case for improving access

● It is crucial to have access information in advance of an event

● Not all disabled people are wheelchair users

This weekend at Glastonbury, for instance, an incredible 1,500 people will be staying at the accessible campsite. When we first started working with Michael and his team, in 2005, numbers were barely a third of that.

Almost without exception, every event or festival that signs up to our Charter sees a similar trend in ticket sales from Deaf and disabled customers.

#MusicWithoutBarriers has received particularly strong backing across the artist community, with the likes of Alt-J, The Cure, Franz Ferdinand, Anna Calvi, Mystery Jets, Slow Club, Robert Wyatt, Frank Turner, Darren Hayman, Richard West, Spaceships Are Cool, Enter Shikari, DJ Void, Jimi Goodwin, Louise Rutkowski, Stealing Sheep, Tom Odell, Jamie Renton, Slowdive, TOY and The Wytches all encouraging friends, fans and followers to come on-board.

And we’d love you guys to get involved too.

According to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, 3 million disabled people in the UK attend at least one live music event each year, yet there are 11 million disabled people in the UK. We know that with better access and facilities, this number can keep growing, and by raising awareness and getting involved you can help increase the amount of deaf and disabled people regularly going to gigs, make their experience better, and support the fantastic work that ‘Attitude is Everything’ are carrying out to reach their ultimate goal – that deaf and disabled people can be audience members, employees or artists at any live music event of their choice: #MusicWithoutBarriers”

Registering your support is super easy, all you need to do is go to www.musicwithoutbarriers.org, or Tweet about the campaign with the hashtag #MusicWithoutBarriers, you can all make an impact!




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