The Chemical Brothers, Blur, Primal Scream and Radiohead are among the artists urging the government to make it easier for British musicians to tour the European Union after Brexit.

The musicians warn that British artists face “insurmountable financial and logistical hurdles” after the UK’s departure from the EU and call on ministers to “save” European tours.

It comes after new after Brexit the rules that came into effect at the start of 2021 mean that artists are not guaranteed to travel without a visa within the EU.

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Artists say additional costs to travel to EU after Brexit should be waived

Many have joined forces in the #LetTheMusicMove campaign which urges the government to end the extra costs and “bureaucracy” that they say keep them from touring across Europe.

Primal Scream bassist Simon Butler said touring the EU at the moment was “financially and logistically unrealistic” for British artists.

“It is essential that bands, artists, musicians and DJs can travel to Europe at all levels of their careers,” he said.

“Europe is part of the geographic workspace.

“Making it financially and logistically unrealistic to put on shows and festivals will end the livelihoods and careers of generations of musicians. “

Another campaign supporter, rock band Skunk Anansie, urged authorities to act immediately.

UK Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sports Oliver Dowden arrives at Downing Street in London on Wednesday 2 December 2020. UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock thanked scientists on Wednesday from Pfizer and BioNTech after their COVID-19 vaccine was approved for emergency use by the country's drug regulator.  Speaking earlier, Hancock gave details of how the vaccine would be distributed starting early next week.  (AP Photo / Kirsty Wigglesworth)
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Artists call on Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden to ‘save’ their industry

“Tours in the EU and the need to put in place the right process for easy and economical access to Europe are crucial now more than ever,” they said in a statement.

“It is the lifeblood of bands and artists, not just financially, but to expand their fan base and deliver their art to a wider audience and the home of many bands to hone their art.

“Especially now, after the extreme financial impact of the pandemic, this tour can and will be a lifeline for many bands, artists and crews.

“We need action, we need support and we need access.”

Scottish singer-songwriter Annie Lennox also supported the campaign with Blur drummer David Rowntree.

Mr Rowntree, now a Labor adviser, had previously warned that there was “a real problem for musicians on tour”.

File photo dated 01/05/20 of a man wearing a protective mask in the departures area of ​​Terminal 1 at Dublin Airport.  Aer Lingus has announced that a number of regional flights have been canceled after operator Stobart Air terminated its contract with the Irish airline.  Issue date: Saturday June 12, 2021.
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Artists are no longer guaranteed to travel without a visa to EU countries

He told Sky News: “A lot of people who were planning on touring Europe will find that they cannot. The next generation of bands who are already living day to day will find that writing, recording and releasing music is not viable because they cannot tour enough to support it. “

The government is increasingly criticized for failing to reach a deal that would allow musicians and performers to work and travel freely in the EU after Brexit.

A petition calling for paperless travel was debated in parliament in February after collecting more than 280,000 signatures.

In January, more than 100 artists and designers, including Sir Elton John, Liam Gallagher and Glastonbury co-organizer Emily Eavis signed a protest letter with similar demands.

Live music contributed £ 1.3bn to the economy in 2019 and £ 86m to exports, according to industry group UK Music.

The organization says 845,000 overseas music fans visited the UK that year and 45,633 jobs were supported by music tourism.

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Radiohead bassist Colin Greenwood said the government had to “put things in place to help British artists” with post-Brexit tours, adding that it was a “massive source of taxable income” for many hospitals in the UK.

Musical tours rely on artists and teams able to travel between many countries in a short period of time.

Brexit put an end to the free movement of Britons in Europe, adding huge costs, paperwork and work permits to tours in many of the 27 member states.

The British government and Brussels blame each other for not solving the problem, each saying the other side rejected their proposals.



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