Monday, April 3, 2017
Iron Maiden's Bruce Dickinson on the Closing of Small Venues
Many smaller music venues all over the UK seem to be closing down lately. Many of the heralded places where countless classic big time bands first cut their teeth are being shut down in favor of gentrifying the neighborhoods and making the property values go up. Iron Maiden singer Bruce Dickinson has recently voiced his distaste for this.
In a recent interview with Wales Online Dickinson discusses the problem and how he feels it is hurting upcoming musicians as well as the communities at large, saying:
“Sadly that seems to be happening in a lot of places. It’s the gentrification of the city centre, the dodgy hangouts which are really cool which kids like. We wouldn’t have been able to start out if there hadn’t been venues like that. The good thing is you don’t need a lot to have a place where you can have a racket and have people turn up.
Small venues are indispensable to bands – always have been and always will be. I think we miss a trick in this country and some countries in Europe do it better in that they protect their social infrastructure. And pubs and small venues are part of that social infrastructure. Just because something would be worth X a square foot, that is a case of people who know the price of everything and the value of nothing.
These are vital things and the reason why people come to a city centre is to keep it alive. And it not just people who want to drink posh lattes, there are other people in the world who have cultural needs and rock and roll is pretty fundamental to people's lives these days.”
Honestly, it's not just in the UK that this is happening. Even in and near Chicago where I'm from all kinds of hallmark smaller venues are shutting down for this, that, and the other reason. It's getting difficult for bands anywhere to find a place to play. Honestly I can kind of see that as part of why the local music scene has been struggling lately.