My Chemical Romance Explain Taking Financial Aid for Postponed Tour
It was revealed earlier this week that a number of name rock and metal bands accepted PPP loans amid the current global pandemic. Among these acts were Slipknot, Tool, Nickelback and a wealth of other bands that were set to be on the road this year. Speaking with Rolling Stone, My Chemical Romance explained their reasoning for taking a PPP loan while dealing with a postponed tour.
“Like most tours that were happening this year, My Chemical Romance’s world tour was cancelled,” the band explained. “MCR received PPP money to ensure their crew is funded in these times of uncertainty until we are able to be out on the road again. We are so grateful to these skilled, dedicated people – some of them are parents, others caretakers, still others who simply have rent to pay – and this money helps them take care of themselves and their families.”
In a report provided by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, it was revealed that a number of bands were among the companies that received aid from the stimulus program.
“The PPP is providing much-needed relief to millions of American small businesses, supporting more than 51 million jobs and over 80 percent of all small business employees, who are the drivers of economic growth in our country,” Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin explained in the report.
A total of $660 billion was given in loans to 600,000 companies, some of which were owned by bands. All businesses listed in the report received a minimum of $150,000 in loans to support their employees, and the majority of the bands mentioned were in the $150,000 to $350,000 bracket.
Recipients of Paycheck Protection Program loans are eligible for forgiveness as long as the business uses the money to pay their employees the same they were prior to the pandemic.
This comes amid a week in which there appears to be some movement helping out the music industry during this unexpected downtime. Earlier this week, the government of the United Kingdom responded to the novel coronavirus' effect on the nation's live entertainment industry with a $2 billion support package to assist "cultural, arts and heritage institutions." In particular, some of the money will go to help music venues stay afloat during the pandemic.
It's the single most significant investment ever made in U.K. culture, and it follows last week's letter from a group of British musical artists to Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden requesting help in saving the country's arts and music scene. Iron Maiden and Judas Priest were among the metal acts to sign.
"Our arts and culture are the soul of our nation," the Culture Secretary said. "They make our country great and are the lynchpin of our world-beating and fast growing creative industries."
He continued, "We must protect and preserve all we can for future generations. Today we are announcing a huge support package of immediate funding to tackle the funding crisis they face. I said we would not let the arts down, and this massive investment shows our level of commitment."
In the U.S., many of the independent music venues across the country are still lobbying for financial assistance from the U.S. government. Just last month, much like in the U.K., a group of over 600 artists petitioned congress for financial help for the independent music venues. Ozzy Osbourne, Dave Grohl, Alice Cooper, Trent Reznor, Robert Plant, Neil Young and more were among the names who backed the campaign.
Speaking of the dire situation facing independent venues in the U.S., the letter sent to congress stated, "With zero revenue and the overwhelming overhead of rent, mortgage, utilities, taxes and insurance, 90 percent of independent venues report that if the shutdown lasts six months and there’s no federal assistance, they will never reopen again." To learn how you can take action to help support independent music venues stateside, visit the NIVA website.
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