Help Chicago’s Music Scene Is Okay For Now

Monday, May 12th, 2008

When I lived in New York, I wasn’t so into the music scene. I wasn’t really a musician back then, so that probably explains some of it, but I never really went to shows either. Music in Chicago is much better. So is small independent theater.

City Hall has a new ordinance in the works that would make it more difficult for independent promoters to put on shows at small venues. This is all in response to the H2 nightmare a couple years back when 20 people were trampled to death after a fight broke out at a concert, but I suspect it will do more to hurt small, honest promoters than it will to stop any future disasters. Most promoters I’ve worked with don’t get rich off of small shows or festivals. They put shows together because it’s fun and they like the music. A $1000 fee and required background check would probably be enough to persuade many of them to quit putting up shows. That would be bad for musicians and bad for Chicago.

So If you’ve got nothing better to do, read what Jim DeRogatis has to say about it and write to your alderman. It’s fun. They usually write back. Okay, maybe I am a little political.

UPDATE: Chicago Promoter’s Ordinance to be reworked.  Hooray!  Hopefully the new version will address the actual problem without killing Chicago’s honest music, theater and comedy promoters.  I have to say, I’m impressed with Chicago’s artistic community.  Way to go everyone.

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