Sir Elton John says the federal government must act to guard the way forward for the UK music trade
Sir Elton John has described the federal government as “philistines”, and accused them of failing to know the implications of Brexit on music.
Since leaving the EU, musicians are now not assured visa-free journey within the bloc, and should face large charges after they go on tour.
“It’s a nightmare,” Sir Elton told the Observer. “To young people just starting a career, it’s crucifying.”
The authorities says musicians could make quick visits to 17 of the 27 EU states.
They embrace frequent touring locations such as France, Germany and the Netherlands the place, the federal government says, live shows could be staged “without needing visas or work permits”.
However, leisure union Bectu stated there are nonetheless “varying degrees of bureaucracy” in these 17 nations; and that the federal government’s assertion does not “quite match up to the expectation that you can do what you could before”.
Sir Elton stated his anger was the results of unsuccessful makes an attempt to foyer politicians.
“We’ve been talking to Lord Strasburger about it, and we’ve been talking to Lord Frost [the UK’s Brexit minister], but we didn’t really get anywhere with him,” he stated.
Lord Strasburger is a Liberal Democrat peer who has been vocal in his criticism of the federal government’s dealing with of post-Brexit touring points.
Asked why there had been resistance from the federal government, the star stated: “They are philistines. The Government are philistines. We’ve got used to governments – especially the British government – just telling us lies every day, and I don’t feel OK with that.
“Look what they did with the NHS. After all that these folks did throughout Covid, they provide them a 1% [pay] improve. I discover that extraordinary. I simply cannot reside with that. It makes me so indignant.”
The star said he was “furious” at the way musicians’ livelihoods were being affected, and pointed out that other arms of the entertainment industry were suffering, too.
“They made no provision for the leisure enterprise, and never only for musicians, actors and movie administrators, however for the crews, the dancers, the individuals who earn a residing by going to Europe.
“People like me can afford to go to Europe because we can get people to fill in the forms and get visas done, but what makes me crazy is that the entertainment business brings in £111 billion a year to this country and we were just tossed away.”
The star’s feedback got here days after a collective of artists – together with Radiohead, Biffy Clyro, Skunk Anansie, The Chemical Brothers and Ghostpoet – wrote to the federal government calling for pressing motion to forestall “the collapse of the industry”.
“It’s essential that bands, artists, musicians and DJs can travel Europe at every level of their career,” stated Primal Scream’s bassist, Simone Butler, who additionally signed the letter.
“To make it financially and logistically unrealistic to do shows and festivals will be halting the livelihoods and careers of generations of musicians,” she added.
Noel Gallagher says touring Europe together with his band, the High Flying Birds, must be scaled down on account of Brexit
Noel Gallagher has additionally expressed anger on the scenario, saying his touring plans must be in the reduction of.
“You can’t just get on a train and go to Paris and do a gig [any more],” the former Oasis singer-songwriter told Radio 4’s Front Row. “You’ve got to apply to do a gig and you’ve got to declare what equipment you’re bringing – and that’s things that never cost us any money two or three years ago, which is going to cost a fortune.”
He continued: “So I just think, ultimately, like most things, the fans are going to lose out because instead of bands going to Europe for four weeks now and doing three gigs in Germany, there’ll be one. And there will be one in France, and one in Spain, and one in Belgium, and then it’ll be a whistle-stop, scaled-down show.”
The authorities has issued the identical response to each criticism of the EU touring scenario, saying: “We want musicians and other creative professionals to be able to tour easily abroad.
“Short-term, short-term visits for paid performances by UK musicians are doable in a minimum of 17 EU nations, together with France, Germany and the Netherlands, while not having visas or work permits.
“However, we recognise the difficulties still being faced by the sector. That is why we are working closely with individual member states to encourage them to adopt a more flexible approach, in line with the UK’s own rules which allow creative professionals to tour easily here.”