This time there or thereabouts last month, my heart sank with social media news that I wasn’t expecting. Yes of course there is always devastating news in our capital, as there is every single day in every capital across the globe but this news was close to my deep hearted home – Little Portland Street’s own independent venue was at risk of turning into another shit yuppy wine bar!
Call me selfish or maybe even narcissistic if you want to read too much into my mind and make your own judgment, but news matters more when it’s closer to you and that’s a fact.
From someone on the periphery, this may not seem like a big deal, but when it matters to you, it matters, I mean I have loved artists and bands throughout my life and have never taken a band breakup badly but tell that the the millions of teenagers heartbroken for weeks and needing counselling after their favourite boy / girl band had split. As everything, it’s about context.
So The Social is at threat, a crowd-funding page was launched to drum up enough money to stave off the vultures for a little longer with an amount that seemed insurmountable. My sunken heart continued for a few days as I watched the crowdfunding page gather pace. Would I get to see Creation 23 continue to showcase the UK’s best new bands at this iconic venue? Would weekday regulars give us this day our daily drinks as eyes are cast over local artwork dripping on the walls? Well, if the latest crowdfunding page is anything to go by, the answer is “Of Fucking Course!”
So may independent pubs, clubs and venue’s close their doors each and every day and as I live music fan, it hurts. It hurts to see all these venues close their doors, knowing full well that in 5 years time, we will be screaming for these venues to come back. There is something we can all do. I know it’s not just about getting people through doors but of course it helps, so the simple answer is get out there and enjoy your local venue, pub, bar, shop or high street eatery because the chances are it won’t be there for long as you keep putting it off thinking “it’s okay, I’ll go in a couple of months” because like it or not, there are other people out there just like you. I’m not here trying to preach to the converted or even the perverted, we just need to be together as an independent family and look after our metaphorical little ones.
Of course, it’s not all about legs through the doors, some venues have to put ticket and drinks prices up just to be able to make a small loss after paying the rent and it’s not because the have a big corporate company who owns their naming rights and just want to make £5 every time a pint of Carling piss is served, our indie venues don’t have that, many of them are just trying to stay afloat, open and give us what they love.
The Social’s crowdfunding page is looking amazing but there is still a way to go, details can be found here: https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/the-social
Support Independent where you can and cherish the ones you have.
Peace and love …. As Per x