News: UKBlues Federation progress report

Posted on: Friday, Apr 24, 2015

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UKBlues – working to promote, support and create a focal point for the Blues in the UK

It has been some time since I last wrote so I think I should bring you up to date with such progress as there is.

First of all, there will be some of you for whom this is the first communication regarding UKBlues as you may only recently have been included on this mailing list. If you want to catch up on what has been said so far by reading the previous e-mails on this subject then links to them are available on our Facebook page or you can read them here and here.

Big thanks must go to Mike Cole who has drafted a ‘Statement of Purpose’, effectively a set of principles for the UK Blues Federation which establish how it will operate etc. We are currently fine tuning these. The existence of such a Statement will be essential to help create some ‘bona fides’ for UKBlues, particularly in our dealings with organisations such as the Blues Foundation and the European Blues Union.

Thanks also go to the handful of people who have indicated a willingness to be considered for a role on the initial Board as well as the many people who have written in or posted on Facebook offering their support.

We already have someone who has offered to be Treasurer and also someone who is prepared to act in a legal role plus people from a marketing/sales/management background etc.  We could with a wider range of skills and capability and so are keen to hear from people who have the desire and energy to supporting UKBlues by serving on the Board.

If you are interested in serving as a member of the Board of the UK Blues Federation and feel that you have a particular skill set or talent which would be of benefit to UKBlues then please contact me now as we are very close to the point where the next logical step is to form a Board so that there is a team of people to work on moving things forward rather than just me!

I am very conscious of the fact that membership of UK Blues needs to offer members some benefits and is not just a one way street. UK Blues will need to levy a membership fee to fund the Federation and its promotion, membership fees of the EBU and the Blues Foundation, cover website costs etc. and to try to help acts/artists to defray the cost of participating in the IBC and EBC and so on.

I have been looking at what other similar groups do around Europe and have no reservations about looking to adapt and adopt things that seem a good idea that they do. France Blues – www.franceblues.com – is a good example. They have several categories of membership and members have the opportunity to be profiled on the website  –  see Digital Blues’ entry here

On this page you will find details of some specific benefits offered to new members of France Blues by some record labels along with details of various festivals that offer free or reduced admission.

I would like to see similar benefits which could be offered to members of UKBlues and if you represent a record label, a festival, a venue or anything else who/which would be prepared to offer some sort of benefit to membesr of UKBlues, then please do get in touch and let us see if we can’t put something together which will, hopefully, benefit not only UKBlues members but also you!

Clearly, membership of UKBlues is going to have to be something for which members pay and we need to decide upon types, levels and costs of membership. If anybody has any particular thoughts on this, your comments/input would be interesting to receive.

Well, that’s it for now and I hope to hear from you. Please keep spreading the word, there are still many, many people who don’t know about UKBlues and the more people who are involved, the better.

Thanks for reading this far and I hope to bring you more news soon.

Ashwyn Smyth for UKBlues 

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