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PRS Music Makeover 2015

On 28/07/15 by Rebekah Kendrick (Communications & Campaigns Officer)

From UB40’s first ever gig in 1979 at the Hare and Hounds in Birmingham, to the Amersham Arms in London which has helped boost the profile of newer bands such as Alt-J and Bombay Bicycle Club, pubs have always played a vital role in fostering musicians whilst bringing communities together to enjoy a huge variety of quality live music.

In recent years, we have seen just how close the relationship with musicians and pubs really is, with artists crafting their own beers, such as Robinson’s Trooper by Iron Maiden’s Bruce Dickinson and Wychwood Brewery’s Piledriver by Status Quo.

You don’t have to be in the industry to know just how tough it is to run a pub and it’s so great to see a competition like Music Makeover rewarding those people who truly go above and beyond by introducing live music on top of their regular offering.

The BBPA has been supporting Music Makeover for five years, and this year, I was delighted to be one of the judges. The competition, run by PRS for Music, gives pubs the chance to win £10,000 of kit. All of the previous winners have had incredible results, most notably as a result of the expert advice PRS has to offer.

The Winners

This year’s competition included two categories: one for pubs which already have a large music offering each month and want to push it forward, and another for pubs which don’t already have regular live music, but want to make it a key part of their pub.

Helping talent grow in the local community is something Adam Dakin at The Maypole, Derby, is clearly passionate about. His winning entry involved ambitious plans to create rehearsal room spaces so that his pub can be a music focal point for the local community. Since taking over the pub, he has already invested his time and effort to build the pub’s reputation in the area: teaching customers ad hoc, scattering instruments throughout the pub and even building a stage for performances.

The second winner, the newly named Hickory Inn in Halberton, has recently undergone some renovations and its landlord and landlady showed a clear desire to make all styles of music available to its varied customer base. With clear ideas of what they will use their winnings for (one idea being a sound-system which will project live music across all the rooms in the pub), it will be exciting to see its transformation.


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