Speaking at the Vote For Music Keynote session at The Great Escape in Brighton, Martin Goldschmidt, Managing Director of the Cooking Vinyl Group explained: “The tax breaks that currently exist to help the music industry actually give the tax break to private investors. As exists for other creative industries, why not also have a scheme that gives the break directly to music?”
“Support would be best targeted as a tax break for recorded music production. Many of the tax breaks offered to film, video games, theatre and now orchestras were designed in part to mitigate the damage done by piracy and market failure. But what creative industry has been hit harder by online piracy than recorded music? Record companies have been hit hard, but recording studios and their workers have been hit hardest.
“This is about putting value back into the whole recording ecosystem of studios, session players and importantly, self-funding artists. Given music’s leading export value, the move would make clear economic sense. More importantly it makes cultural sense – as an industry, we’ve grown very risk-averse in terms of what gets signed, what gets played on the radio. Let’s get help to fund more of culturally diverse, crazy, exciting stuff that so often gains wild popularity.”
For any change to be made though, Goldschmidt believes it is vital that the music industry delivers a clear message “The reason the tax break currently goes to the financial services industry and not the music industry is that we fight among ourselves and are very bad at talking to government. We have to have the discussions behind closed doors, agree the common ground and send a unified message to government.”
Established in 1986, Cooking Vinyl has developed a reputation as one of Europe’s prime artist-focused independent labels, inspiring an enviable loyalty among its artist roster. It is also in the vanguard of music companies offering innovative services-only deals that claim no stake in artists’ copyrights.
Artists signed to Cooking Vinyl include Embrace, Röyksopp, James, Amanda Palmer, The Prodigy, Marilyn Manson and Billy Bragg. Such is the loyalty and affection among artists for the label that the likes of Frank Black have returned close to 20 times to record fresh collections with them. The Prodigy’s Invaders Must Die was Europe’s biggest selling independent album in 2009.