Joni Mitchell, Ian MacKaye, Carly Rae Jepsen, & Hundreds More Sign Letter To Support Independent Music Venues
Joni Mitchell, Ian MacKaye, Carly Rae Jepsen, Dave Grohl, Billie Eilish, Willie Nelson, Lady Gaga, Mavis Staples, Neil Young, Coldplay, and hundreds of other musicians and comedians have signed a letter addressed and sent to Congress in support of the National Independent Venue Association’s request for government assistance.
“Independent venues give artists their start, often as the first stage most of us have played on,” the letter reads. “These venues were the first to close and will be the last to reopen. With zero revenue and the overwhelming overhead of rent, mortgage, utilities, taxes and insurance, 90% of independent venues report that if the shutdown lasts six months and there’s no federal assistance, they will never reopen again.”
“If these independent venues close forever, cities and towns across America will not only lose their cultural and entertainment hearts, but they will lose the engine that would otherwise be a driver of economic renewal for all the businesses that surround them,” the letter continues.
Other artists that signed the letter include Willie Nelson, Gary Clark Jr., Miranda Lambert, Coldplay, Kacey Musgraves, Alabama Shakes’ Brittany Howard, Leon Bridges, Ozzy Osbourne, Kamasi Washington, Trent Reznor, Joan Baez, Kesha, Flatbush Zombies, Beach House, and many more.
The letter is part of the Save Our Stages campaign, which the newly-formed National Independent Venue Association launched when it became clear that concerts and live events wouldn’t see a return to a normal schedule anytime in the near future.
Honestly, it’s worth going over to the website to see all of the artist’s physical signatures — from St. Vincent to Beck to Mitski and many, many others. You can also send your own letter to Congress to express your support of music venues — more info on how to do that here.