Stevenage’s Bar&Beyond nightclub to monitor tunes its DJs spin so artists get properly paid

Bar&Beyond is taking part in the trial to help ensure artists get paid properly

Bar&Beyond is taking part in the trial to help ensure artists get paid properly - Credit: Archant

Next time you are at Stevenage nightclub Bar&Beyond, spare a thought for the artists who slaved away to craft the tunes that provide the soundtrack for your night.

With more and more music being listened to on streaming platforms like Spotify and Deezer and a lot of music being shared illegally online, it’s a lot harder for artists to recoup decent royalties for their work. Ultimately this makes it harder for them to keep working as musicians.

To help reverse this trend, the club at Stevenage Leisure Park is taking part in a pilot scheme to collect data from tracks being spun by its DJs.

A small device in the DJ booth will monitor music played and send results to a secure online database to be matched, analysed and reported back to music industry licensing bodies PRS for Music and PPL.

The aim will be to make sure artists, publishers and producers get royalties for the tracks – something that has often been overlooked when they are played in public.

Having initially launched in top London nightclubs Ministry of Sound and Fabric, the MRT pilot is being rolled out in a selection of clubs, bars, pubs and hotels with valid music licences in place across the UK.

Bar&Beyond general manager Stephen Haughton said: “Music is the very heartbeat of our business and it’s in our interest to see that talented artists are rewarded for their creations.

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“With online streaming and other digital technology, it’s increasingly difficult for songwriters and musicians to make a living from their creations – so anything we can do to help and attract and support the latest local talent has to be a good thing.”

Speaking on behalf of PPL and PRS, executive director Karen Buse said: “We are delighted to have the support of Deltic, which is such an influential player in the hospitality business.

“We look forward to working with Stephen and the other clubs to gain insight into how technology could help ensure the right people are paid for the music that keeps clubbers coming in.”

Bar&Beyond was opened last year after a £700,000 renovation at the site, which formerly housed Chicago’s.

Bar&Beyond is one of six venues owned by The Deltic Group.