Berlin music agencies come together to support 'Booking United'
The advocacy group aims to make waves in the German government's attitude to the treatment of its DJs
The beginning of the new decade has been a rather poor one. One could argue that this has been good for those introverts however it has had a devastating impact on many industries, namely the music sector.
Music artists that rely on an audience and a venue to play at have been left in the dark due to more pressing matters regarding public wellbeing. One of the hardest hit countries from COVID-19 was Germany, due to its population density of 623 people per square mile. This means that German cinemas, schools, concerts and many more things have been greatly affected.
The German electronic dance music community was on its knees earlier this year due to the cancellation of thousands of shows both in and out of Germany. This left many DJs without a sustainable income for a while. It's only been a few months since German DJs used the concept of drive-in concerts to get the ball rolling again.
A large majority of the EDM agencies based Berlin have joined a group called 'Booking United', calling for more support by the German government to help those DJs and booking agencies who haven't been able to get the financial support they require.
Germany has already paid cancellation fees to freelance artists who made bookings funded by the federal government. Booking United asks that this policy be applied to all artists, regardless of federal funding.
This is part of their statement on their website:
"We will not be able to generate bookings for our artists for an indefinite period of time. For the time being, we cannot be promised any binding relaxation dates. Therefore, we need financial support for ourselves and our artists, which goes beyond the previous measures of the federal and state governments."
Booking United is a group that's backed by over 140 agencies within the German capital, supporting more than 2500 German artists, international and regional. The letter to the government states that they need more financial support during these uncertain times.
Many German music producers have come out in support of the movement:
The group asks for cancellation fees of up to 60% for artists contracted for less than €1,000, and 40% for fees above €1,000 up to €2,500. They request that these cancellation fees be paid by the government and not by similarly beleaguered promoters.
With support from EDM veterans like Paul Van Dyk, Sven Väth, Dr. Motte, Ellen Allien and Paul Kalkbrenner, the Booking United group is set to force a change within the German government.