You may recall that, back in the normal times, we used to have music most weeks at the market, with all artists being paid for their performances. But last year saw us cancel all our live music, as has pretty much every other venue across the country. We’ve all been affected by the past twelves months and professional musicians are no exception. Most have seen their means of earning a livelihood – touring, performing, teaching – put on hold. At the same time most musicians don’t qualify for much in the way of government financial support as they tend to be self-employed. Careers have been derailed, livelihoods have been wiped out, music is going unwritten, songs unsung.
But it’s time like these that we need musicians and the music they create the most. Music can relax you, raise your spirits, and help you connect with some treasured memories. Most importantly, during a time when most of us are living simple, stripped-down lives, music allows us to maintain a connection with all the emotions we experience in our lives.
So we’re launching Levy Market Mixtapes! We’ve asked a selection of Manchester’s finest independent record labels and other local music organisations to each put together a playlist.
Every week we’ll be releasing a new market mixtape which will be played at the market while you do your shopping and also published here on our site so you can listen along at home, keeping the social vibes alive while we all do our bit to overcome what will hopefully be the final hurdle of lockdown.
You can look forward to some choice tunage from:
And we’re asking you to do what you can to support those struggling musicians. The Musicians’ Union Coronavirus Hardship Fund provides small grants of £200 to provide urgent relief for musicians in financial hardship. The Musicians’ Union has distributed over £1.3M to members in hardship grants since April 2020, but there are many more who are still in dire financial circumstances.
So when you visit the market this spring, please enjoy listening to the sounds of your city, take them home with you and make a donation if you can – anything at all can make a difference. We’re all looking forward to live music returning later this year – let’s do what we can to ensure that there are people there to play for us.
Stay tuned for our first market mixtape dropping next week!