UK Bars/Pubs Face New Music Fees

As the music industry still tries to figure out how to survive in the new digital age, one place they keep dipping back into is the Bar/Club scene. Though you might be thinking “This is a craft alcohol blog! Why do we care?” – because when you run a tasting room or taproom you fall under the same rules for live music and any audio you might have playing in the space.

In the UK, according to this story in Drinks Business, the bars, pubs, and clubs are facing a fairly major increase in the licensing fees they have to pay to continue to have live & recorded music played in the establishments. Upwards of almost 130% increase in fees! This is a trend we’ve seen somewhat here in the US as well, but not to that level – at least not yet. This is something to keep an eye on as you make plans for your taproom/tasting room and what the extra costs might be. (Tip: Remember that the fee the charge you is based on seats/capacity in the room, and not how many actual people are there or not!)

If you need to look up more info, here in the US you’ll want to checkout the 3 major music licensing companies: ASCAP, BMI, & SESAC. These groups do control some international areas too, but you’ll have to check with your particular country’s rules to know if there are others as well.