Music business and Beyond showcased in Manchester

Tony Lyons and Oli Wilson

The music business is in Manchester for the next few days as Oliver Wilson’s Beyond The Music conference and showcase swings into action.

Very much like his late great father’s In The City event in the 90s and 00s, Wilson is looking to use the event as a rallying call for the industry to focus on key issues and state their case as a major economic contributor to the city region and national economy.

Today, in two different sessions Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham will be speaking, firstly on the need for a ‘music parliament’ that goes beyond an industry working group (composed of representatives and from across the music sector), to explore industry-led actions that support fair remuneration, support for UK artists to target external markets and how the industry can campaign for tax relief, diversity and greater coordination and connectivity at a local level.

Burnham launched the festival at South By South West in Austin, Texas, earlier this year and has high hopes that it can be expanded to become as significant to the city as SXSW is for Austin.

A second session will be chaired by Southport-born musician Tom Gray of the band Gomez, who founded the #BrokenRecord campaign in 2020 which has been successful in bringing about a UK parliamentary inquiry and report into the economics of the music industry, with a Competition & Markets Authority study of the music industry.

Secondly, Burnham will gather the Metro Mayors together to lead an industry fightback, and make sure the live music scene remains a key part of Britain’s global influence.

Though the industry discussions will take place at Manchester Central, some of the live performances will take place at the site of the NCP car park in the centre of the Northern Quarter, thanks to a licensing deal struck for Wilson by veteran licensing lawyer Tony Lyons.

He handled the licenses for the Hacienda nightclub during the turbulent Madchester era, when his client then was Oli Wilson’s father, the record label boss and Hacienda founder Tony Wilson.

Lyons has secured a drink and dance licence for a one-off electro DJ night in the ground floor and basement of the Northern Quarter car park on Saturday October 14th.