UK Laws on gigging as a teen?


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12-19-2010, 10:29 AM
what are the laws on gigging at different venues as a teen in the uk? I'm 15 and I'd like to start gigging outside of just school concerts, maybe even pubs and stuff, performing to people who might acknowledge the music we play a little more. but I'm a bit lost on where i stand legally. any help?

12-19-2010, 10:33 AM
Out of sex, drugs and rock & roll.

You're eligble only for rock & roll.

12-19-2010, 10:34 AM
I don't think there's a law against you playing in a pub or bar, just as long as the venue don't sell you alcohol and you're with someone 18/21 or older. It's worth looking into though if you are unsure.

Silent Murder
12-19-2010, 10:37 AM
You ask a pub landlord or owner of a venue. If they let you, they let you. At least that's what happens in rural areas where everyone's happy and larry. If you're busking you may need a license, but I don't believe you're going for that.

To recap: Don't need laws and it's up to the venue to hire or not. You'll need a high standard for most places to take you in.

Edit: And I mean HIGH standard. They won't take you in if you might not help rake in customers.

12-19-2010, 10:41 AM
Out of sex, drugs and rock & roll.

You're eligble only for rock & roll.

12-19-2010, 10:44 AM
Thanks, just asking out of interest.

12-19-2010, 02:48 PM
Out of sex, drugs and rock & roll.

You're eligble only for rock & roll.

just pure win:hug:

12-20-2010, 02:46 PM
There's no legal reason you can't play a bar or a pub gig - you don't have to be over 18 to be on normal licensed premises in the UK.

However, a lot of places will not be keen about you going there, for the very simple reason that it's not too difficult to get hold of alcohol once you're inside, and the repercussions if they got checked and a 15-year old was drinking in the corner are actually quite significant.

Mention it to the venue owner up front - say 'we've got someone/several someones in the band who aren't old enough to drink, is this an issue for you?' They'll probably mark your hand and/or require you to leave immediately after you finish your set. Tough break.

What is vitally important is that you don't try to get your hands on alcohol while there. If you do, and get caught, you will *never* play there again, or at least not for the next three years, and they might well pass the news around other bars in the area.

For busking, it depends on your local council, some have laws prohibiting busking without a license/away from designated pitches. This normally isn't enforced too much, but you run the risk of hassle if you decide to busk where you're not supposed to (e.g. the London Underground is heavily regulated, as is Covent need to audition to busk at the latter).

12-20-2010, 08:16 PM
A gig I went to - three or four bands from my school (back when we were all underage). Venue owner said it was fine for them to play.

Everyone turned up, chilled out, the band got ready. Just to strike the first few notes when the owner comes up on stage.

"Everyone who's under 18 out".

The whole room emptied, and the bands were left with no crowd.

12-24-2010, 03:09 PM
You should be ok. Most pubs will be ok with it as long as the owner isn't really anal about stuff. I know a band who managed to get a strictly 18+ venue down to a 14+ so it's not that big of a deal.

12-24-2010, 09:53 PM
We got a name for ourselves on the pub circuit at 15/16, but it's very much at the owner's discretion - in most places you're not allowed on the premises after a certain time.

The big question is whether a landlord/club manager is going to want a young band on.
Although we got popular with the local biker scene, there was sometimes a bit of animosity towards us - most of the older guys thought it was brilliant to see kids playing Hendrix and Zep (and playing it well), but there were always a few who acted possessive, seemed almost annoyed that younger people were playing 'their music'.

The major problem from a landlord's viewpoint is not whether you'll go down well with the existing crowd - in my experience most rock clubs love the novelty of seeing younger guys play provided they're up to scratch.
It's the fact that they'll expect a load of your 15-year-old mates to come rolling through the door - which simply can't happen.