Well that’s all folks… Independent Venue Week 2017 has truly been an incredible seven days of music, community, good times and more. To every single person who went to a gig over the last week, thank you. To all the acts, promoters, media and partners – #IVW17 could not have happened without you. And to every independent venue, and all the staff who worked so hard this week, a huge well done. Independent Venue Week was created to celebrate and showcase what it is you do all year round and over the last seven days you’ve given the UK one hell of a show. Thank you.
Independent Venue Week has been over a year in the planning and it was every bit as good as we hoped it would be. And more. Travelling around the country last week we’ve seen venues of all different shapes and sizes, we’ve been part of crowd-after-crowd who burn with a passionate for music and we’ve experienced acts of all genres, from old favourites to new discoveries.
Most of all the IVW staff have enjoyed putting faces to the people who run the UK’s independent venues and who nurture its musical talent. Without the people behind our independent venues and the effort and commitment they give every night the culture of these isles would be so much poorer. They are some of the most remarkable people you could ever wish to meet. Passionate, dedicated, driven and caring, motivated by a love of music that helps other people – artists – to shine. Independent Venue Week celebrates these people and the venues they love.
We also want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has supported IVW this year and made it possible. That starts with Steve Lamacq and his very lovely team at BBC 6 Music – Ali, Frank and, for the last time, Tom – who have played a huge part in the growing support for IVW over at Broadcasting House. Their daily coverage this year did not just focus on venues, promoters and artists, but also partners and fans showing just how wide the passion for these spaces is. We also want to say thank you to all the other radio stations, television channels, newspapers, magazines, blogs and more who have covered Independent Venue Week this year, not least of all our media partner this year Drowned In Sound. Getting the message out to a wider audience is crucial to helping about the UK’s independent venues grow their audiences.
Without the people behind our independent venues the culture of these isles would be so much poorer.
We also want to pay a heartfelt thank our partners: Arts Council England, Creative Scotland, Help Musicians UK, PRS For Music, Jägermeister, Vauxhall, Skiddle, Vevo, Fred Perry, Musicians Union, Jack Daniels, PPL, BASCA and Signature Brew. Not only have they all made IVW possible, but they have embraced and got involved in the week in a way that goes above and beyond, visiting and celebrating venues.
Of course we send a special salute for this year’s Independent Venue Week Ambassador Tim Burgess. The Charlatans’ frontman not only played his own solo show, rallied support and raised awareness for IVW, but he also curated a series of Tim Peaks gigs right across the country. Cheers Tim.
Needless to say, we’re already planning for Independent Venue Week 2018 – our fifth birthday – but in the meantime we want to share your stories and pictures from this year using #IVW17, while we are planning some special one off events for later in 2017 too so watch this space… In fact if you saw an up-and-coming act last week you’d like to support please nominate for a special tour we’re planning with Jägermeister. Just head on to social media and tell us about them using #JagerIVW.
Finally, can I just remind you that while Independent Venue Week 2017 has been our biggest yet – 140+ venues staged shows – it is just one week at the beginning of the year. The UK’s brilliant independent venues are putting on shows all year round. So if you enjoyed IVW17 you know what do: keep going to gigs. And see you all at IVW18…
Sybil Bell, Founder Independent Venue Week