Save Our Stages: 23 Alabama music venues part of nationwide effort to get funding

Updated: Sep. 23, 2020 at 11:13 PM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - When was the last time you saw a band play in person?

Independently owned music venues in North Alabama are still not holding public shows. But...
Independently owned music venues in North Alabama are still not holding public shows. But without funding help, many could have to close.(Tangled Strings Studios)

The pandemic has put a pause on this experience for most venues for six months now. Especially the smaller ones that are independently owned.

The Camp’s been able to have bands on this stage recently because they have the outdoor space to spread out, but they have not been able to get a packed audience.

The Camp is one of 2,000 venues a part of NIVA, the National Independent Venue Association.

And along with 23 other music venues here in Alabama, they are coming together to urge Congress to grant them funding.

“If there isn’t some sort of help, federal help, the estimation is 90 percent of those venues is going to close,” Ryan Murphy said.

Ryan Murphy is the president of the Huntsville Venue Group, he says the Save our Stages Act that’s on the table in Washington D.C. is needed.

“There’s a lot of venues who are either at the very tail end of drying up every resource and this would at least keep the lights on or keep the overhead,” Murphy said.

Murphy says 35 senators, including Doug Jones, have cosigned the bill, which would allocate $10 billion to music venues.

Here’s the eight venues in the Tennessee Valley that could receive some of that money.

Tangled String Studios - Huntsville

The Camp - Huntsville

Venue Group - Huntsville

A. M. Booths Lumberyard - Huntsville

Big Spring Entertainment - Huntsville

Dorm Eleven - Sheffield

Princess Theatre Center for the Performing Arts - Decatur

Shoals Community Theatre - Florence

Danny Davis who owns Tangled Strings Studio in Huntsville is counting on it.

“Without any revenue from the shows It just couldn’t work for us,” Davis said.

So once the pandemic hit, he poured all his resources into his custom guitar making shop in order to stay afloat.

“We will up our production rate and see if we can generate enough revenue to hold on to our space. If I’m not successful there, then we’re out of luck,” Davis said.

Davis made the decision to cancel all shows in his space until 2022 at the earliest, unless circumstances drastically improve.

“It’s still a dangerous virus. I don’t want to risk anyone’s well being.”

Ryan Murphy says the music industry as a whole suspects it wont be until 2022 until they can really make a come back.

A representative for the Camp tells us the independent music industry needs Congress to take action now more than ever.

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