Olympics bosses try to avoid paying bands
Organisers of the London Olympics are trying to make professional musicians perform for free – using the tired old excuse they should “do it for the exposure.”
Management committee Locog are already a laughing stock in rock music quarters after asking whether long-dead Who drummer Keith Moon was available to appear at the event.
And they recently drew the ire of live music fans by confirming all acts who play at the opening and closing events in London will be miming.
Bands including Paul McCartney, the Stereophonics, Snow Patrol and Duran Duran have been confirmed to play, while the Sex Pistols, the Who and Paul Rodgers all declined.
Now the fatcat bosses are being criticised for spending £11billion on the international athletics event – more than the already-extended £9.3billion they were allowed to spend.
And instead of trying to renegotiate “bad deals for the taxpayer” including paying double the agreed amount for security arrangements, Locog appears to be trying to save cash by ripping off professional musicians.
Corporate Watch say they’ve seen an email which instructs Locog staff not to spend money on music “across the board.”
One performer reports: “Locog said they were really keen for us play on major stages at different events. We replied quoting our normal fees. After months of meeting they offered us a raft of gigs – but said it was policy not to pay any musicians for performing.
“They should stop trying to capitalise on the image of the Olympics and pay a fair rate for our services.”
Another source said they’d been asked to sign a contract agreeing they were volunteering and there was no obligation to pay them.
A spokesman for the Musicians Union says they’re investigating the reports, adding: “If it turns out to be true then it flies in the face of assurances we’ve been given. It would appear to be a breach of the Principles of Cooperation that LOCOG agreed with trade unions.”
The 2012 Olympic Games take place in London between July 27 and August 12.