Jack Antonoff calls on venues to “cease taxing” merch gross sales

Jack Antonoff has known as on venues to “cease taxing” merchandise gross sales, saying it’s “actually the one approach you earn cash if you begin out touring.”

Taking to Twitter on Friday night time, the Bleachers vocalist stated: “Whereas we’re having the dialogue can venues merely cease taxing merch of artists?”

“The extra we make it tenable for younger and small artists to make a dwelling on the street the extra nice music we are going to get,” Antonoff continued. “Touring is likely one of the most trustworthy methods to make a dwelling. (It’s) among the hardest and most heartfelt work you are able to do. So why should (venues) fuck artists so laborious?” He then supplied what he thought of “easy options”.

“Cease taxing merch, cease mendacity to artists about prices of placing on reveals, and embrace artists in additional areas of income,” Antonoff added. “The tales I may inform from my years touring are bananas. Younger artists on tour are the final to see any cash.”

“If these are my final tweets, I’m cool with that,” stated Antonoff.

It comes amidst a wider dialog round touring and tickets, following Ticketmaster cancelling the overall sale for Taylor Swift’s ‘ Eras Tour’ after points with numerous pre-sales.

“There are a mess of the reason why folks had such a tough time making an attempt to get tickets and I’m making an attempt to determine how this example could be improved transferring ahead,” Taylor wrote in an open-letter in response. “It’s actually superb that 2.4 million folks obtained tickets, however it actually pisses me off that quite a lot of them really feel like they went via a number of bear assaults to get them.”

Following the incident, Ticketmaster apologised for the incident and The USA Division Of Justice formally opened an anti-trust investigation into Dwell Nation, the corporate which owns Ticketmaster.

Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift attends the MTV Europe Music Awards 2022 on November 13, 2022 in Dusseldorf, Germany. Credit score: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic.

The dialog round venues taking a minimize of merch gross sales has been gathering steam in current months. Final December, The CharlatansTim Burgess and former New Order member Peter Hook spoke out about venues that take an unfair minimize of merch gross sales, with Burgess saying “​​the entire system wants addressing”. The next month, The Featured Artists Coalition (FAC) introduced a brand new listing highlighting music venues that cost zero fee on the sale of merchandise.

Earlier this 12 months, The Large Moon introduced that they’d not be promoting merch at their headline present on the O2 Kentish City Discussion board, and could be internet hosting a pop-up retailer at a close-by pub as a substitute. The band additionally known as out the venue’s practise of taking a minimize of 25 per cent plus VAT on every sale.

The Large Moon additionally thanked London band Dry Cleansing for “opening this up as a risk.” Dry Cleansing took an equivalent strategy for the sale of merchandise at their very own Kentish City discussion board present earlier this 12 months.

Chatting with NME in regards to the apply of venues taking cash from gross sales of t-shirts and albums made on-site, Burgess stated: “It’s one thing that’s been round for years – however after we spoke as much as our supervisor and label, they’d simply say ‘That’s the way in which it’s’.

“Usually at Charlatans gigs, our followers smash the report for the bar take at a venue,” Burgess continued. “After I first tweeted about merch fee, Warren Ellis from The Unhealthy Seeds replied that we may possibly ask the venues for a share of the bar take. It’s no extra unreasonable than them taxing the merch.”

FAC CEO David Martin instructed NME that over 400 venues have been now signed as much as their listing and added that “the dialogue relating to punitive charges on merchandise gross sales is now very a lot a public one, with followers more and more voicing their displeasure at such practices. The FAC will proceed to advocate for a fairer strategy and a extra equitable system that enables artists to develop and develop.” Discover out extra in regards to the listing right here.


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