CHARLOTTE – The Charlotte music community and city leaders now have a strategy to develop an even stronger, more vibrant music scene.
The Charlotte Music Ecosystem Study and Action Plan provides an in-depth assessment of the health of the local music industry and more than three dozen strategic action recommendations.
“With this action plan, we have made a great ﬁrst step in becoming a well-known destination for music,” Charlotte City Council member Tariq Bokhari said. “This provides the data and framework for the music community to collaborate, organize and lead the eﬀorts, with the support of city leadership and, we hope, all Charlotteans.”
The survey reveals that musicians’ and music fans’ think that Charlotte’s music scene is heading in the right direction; however, the data also shows many challenges for the people creating and booking local music, from low incomes to difficulties maintaining and renovating venues.
“Through interviews with more than 70 Charlotte music people and an extensive online survey, we took a deep dive into challenges facing musicians and the overall music industry in Charlotte,” said Don Pitts, founder of Sound Music Cities, the consulting firm that created the plan. “We found struggles, but also a lot of opportunity that music can and will ﬂourish in Charlotte, and we created a strategy to turn that opportunity into reality.”
The action plan includes ideas such as creating a Charlotte Musician’s League to organize and lobby for musicians, launching a Charlotte music venue alliance, forming a short-term grant to fund music journalism positions, hosting a regional music conference, advocating for policy changes that will prevent further losses of small venues that incubate new talent, and creating a “Charlotte Up Close” festival that capitalizes on the emerging popularity of loft sessions and listening parties.
The study and action plan is available at www.musiceverywhereclt.com.