Live gigs are the top occasions that adults choose to spend their money on, according to research. A poll of 2,000 adults who attend live events found that 63% prefer concerts over theatre shows (14%). The study also revealed that 43% of respondents would choose a gig over a night in the pub with friends, and 10% would even miss a friend’s wedding to attend a concert. The research, commissioned by mobility super app FREENOW, also found that 80% of respondents believe the music scene is a very important factor for living in any city, highlighting the significance of live shows for city dwellers. Additionally, 88% of those surveyed said that live music experiences positively impact their mental health.
To support the future of live music, FREENOW has launched the ‘Ride for Music’ campaign. The campaign involves donating £1 per ride to the Music Venue Trust, a charity that works to protect and promote grassroots music venues. Passengers can ‘opt in’ to ensure the donation is made at no extra cost to them. The campaign has received support from musician Ed Sheeran, who started his career playing in grassroots music venues. Sheeran commended the campaign and expressed hope that it raises significant funds for the Music Venue Trust.
However, the study also revealed that 68% of respondents have been impacted by the cost of living crisis, which has affected the number of live events they have attended this year. As a result, Music Venue Trust’s latest report predicts that 16% of grassroots music venues will close by the end of 2023, with 125 venues having already closed in the last year. Michelle de Maat, representing FREENOW UK, emphasized the positive impact of music on people’s lives and mental wellbeing. Supporting live music and preserving venues is crucial to making city life more vibrant for all, she said.
The study also uncovered that 84% of respondents enjoy discovering new music through the gigs they attend. Additionally, nearly two-thirds of respondents prefer a feeling of intimacy in the shows they attend, opting for smaller venues over larger ones. However, 48% of those surveyed were unaware that grassroots music venues are closing down. The research also found that 62% of respondents have booked tickets to see a show spontaneously, and 80% like the idea of attending an impromptu gig in the heart of a city. However, 48% struggle to act spontaneously, potentially missing out on live music opportunities.
Overall, the research highlights the importance of live music experiences to adults and their positive impact on mental health. It also underscores the need to support grassroots music venues, which are facing closures due to the cost of living crisis. FREENOW’s ‘Ride for Music’ campaign aims to contribute to the resilience of these venues and ensure that artists have a place to showcase their talent. By supporting the campaign, music fans can make a genuine difference in preventing venue closures and supporting the entire music and night-time economy.