Photo by Ian Rawn

This past Tuesday, Sept. 15, Bob Weir, Don Was, Congressman Mike Thompson (D-CA), Another Planet Entertainment’s Allen Scott, UltraSound’s Derek Featherstone, Napa venue owner Ken Tesler and Local 16 stagehand union member Joan Desmond participated in a Zoom press conference calling for support of independent venues in the Bay Area and across the country (according to Variety). Each of the participants called for support of the Restart Act and the Save Our Stages Act.

According to Variety, the two acts “have drawn significant support on Capitol Hill and in the music industry, but are yet to move forward in Congress.”

“I’m here today to speak for the rest of the folks who are still trying to do well or haven’t done well yet — the roadies, the ticket-takers… it’s just endless, the number of people involved in this industry,” said Weir during the press conference.

“Both these bills will make sure small venues can stay in business and entertain us for years to come,” said Thompson. “I’m going to do everything in my power to get these bills signed and passed into law.”

“We were the first businesses to close and we’ll be the last to open,” said Scott. “We have basically zero dollars in revenue coming in. It is very grim. I get the sense from talking to people across the country that many businesses are holding on by their fingertips, waiting to hear what will happen with this latest COVID relief bill. if something isn’t done here, I think we’re going to see a wave of live music venues go out of business.”

“We need help from the government,” Weir concluded. “And I’d like to point out that music crosses party lines. Everybody needs music. I’ll leave it at that. Everybody needs music.”

For more information, head over to Variety.