Pubs: fantastic five revealed

Music Makeover, PRS for MusicPRS for Music has announced the five finalists of its competition to put music back at the heart of pubs.

Launched earlier this year, Music Makeover will award a pub £5,000 to improve its venue with live music facilities. The finalists are: The Brunel Arms, Pontyclun, Wales; Pig & Whistle, Ladbroke Grove, London; The Burnaby Arms, Bedfordshire; The Grafton, Kentish Town, London; The Shepherds Crook, Portsmouth.

It is the third Music Makeover run by the organisation, attracting a record number of entries from England, Scotland and Wales. Judges include Guy Fletcher OBE, PRS Chairman, representatives from British Beer and Pub Association and Musicians’ Union. The overall winner will be announced by 31 December 2012.

Cerys Matthews, singer, songwriter and broadcaster, said: ‘Open mic nights in pubs and clubs are usually the first port of call when you perform for the very first time. We played our first gig as Catatonia in Clwb Ifor Bach at an open mic night. We then went on to play the Yellow Kangaroo and other local pubs in Cardiff, Swansea and North Wales that welcomed live music. Pubs are the place where future band members meet, strategies are planned, ideas hatched, and the place where the dream begins.’

Paul Clements, Director of Public Performance Sales, PRS for Music, added: ‘The pub is one of our much loved institutions and smart establishments are diversifying their business model to attract customers. It is encouraging to see so many new licensees in our Music Makeover final, who are dedicated entrepreneurs who want to make music central to their local communities again.’

Earlier this year, PRS for Music contacted 20,000 pubs to offer advice on making music work for them, including tips on genre choice, stage lighting, jukeboxes, gig promotion and ticketing. Meanwhile, the Live Music Act came into effect in October, meaning pubs are now able to provide live music with less red tape.

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