Scottish beer company Tennent’s Lager has launched a new £150,000 ($293,000) live music venture, with fans deciding how the money is invested.
The Tennent’s Mutual live program will begin in October or November and founding members will select artists, decide on locations for shows and make decisions on ticket prices.
Those who sign up before June 30 on www.tennentsmutual.com will be given founder member status and the right to vote on the live music plans.
The Tennent’s Mutual is a not-for-profit enterprise that will have no booking fees, and concert income will be ploughed back into its central fund to continue staging live events.
Figures from the industry lending their support include former Rolling Stones manager Andrew Loog Oldham, Babyshambles guitarist Drew McConnell and independent Scottish labels such as Chemikal Underground and The Fence Collective.
Tennent’s says a poll of 13,000 music fans found that 99% felt that the Scottish music scene needs “something different”, while 94% of respondents said they find out about new music through the Internet. The poll also found that 98% would be interested in having more bearing on the development of live music in Scotland.
“From our perspective, The Tennent’s Mutual is fresh, creative and most importantly, very different to anything that we have done in the past,” said George Kyle, head of sponsorship at Tennent’s Lager.
“We’ve been committed to music in Scotland for many years and we knew that the time was right not just to continue our level of investment but to challenge ourselves to really innovate and push past traditional boundaries. It has been increasingly important to us to work with the people that really matter – the fans – meaning that it was simply not enough to present something that was a finished product, set-in stone to them.”