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Carmarthen's CWRW wins £10,000 PRS for Music Back to Live Music Venue Prize

The grassroots music venue is the winner of the Wales region. The competition was launched to inject much-needed financial support into venues who are dedicated to improving live music experiences in local communities.

Above: second from left CWRW Owner Michael Hilton and team

PRS for Music, the UK-headquartered organisation that represents the rights of over 160,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers around the world, announces beloved Carmarthen grassroots music bar CWRW (pronounced koo-roo) as the winner of its Back to Live Music Venue Prize of £10 000 for the Welsh region.

The recovery-focussed nationwide competition was launched by PRS for Music to give independent live music venues across the UK the chance to win one of six regional prizes of up to £10,000 and inject much-needed financial support into venues who are dedicated to improving live music experiences in their local communities.

Community advocate and music fan himself, CWRW owner Michael Hilton, plans on using the £10 000 PRS for Music prize money to upgrade the venue’s lighting, add recording capabilities and create a more inclusive space so audience-goers with disabilities can participate and access live music events.

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Winning PRS for Music’s Back to Live Music Venue Prize is incredible. Incentives like these are fundamentally important for grassroots venues like ours to continue to provide creative spaces for the community and emerging talent to develop their skills. The funds will be used to develop the audience experience, inclusion and continuing to support the next generation of artists.  

Michael Hilton, Owner of CWRW
CWRW in Carmarthenshire
Above: CWRW bar

The devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the live music sector has been well-documented; between 2019 and 2021, PRS for Music saw an 84% decline in the number of live performance setlists reported to the organisation, falling from 124,000 in 2019, to 19,300 in 2021.

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It was obvious to the judges of the PRS for Music Back to Live Music Venue Prize that CWRW is so important to Carmarthan, not only because it is the only venue in town, but also because of how focused Michael Hilton and the team at CWRW are in creating a vibrant community music space. We’re proud to find ways to support local music venues across the UK.

Andrea Czapary Martin, CEO, PRS for Music

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Independent live music venues are pivotal within local communities, providing spaces that inspire the next generation of songwriters and performers. Congratulations to CWRW for keeping music at the forefront through a very difficult time.

Tony Barton, Head of Writer Support & Relationships, PRS for Music

PRS for Music’s Back to Live Music Venue Prize competition launched in March 2022 as the organisation’s direct response to the devastating effects of the global pandemic on live music venues in the UK. Open to independent live music venues who are not part of a national brand whose offering included music prior to pandemic closures, winning venues were determined by a judging panel made up of leading representatives from across the music, arts, and hospitality sectors. Complete prize terms and conditions can be found here. Four more UK regional Back to Live Music Venue Prize winners will be announced over the coming months.  

About PRS for Music

PRS for Music represents the rights of over 160,000 songwriters, composers, and music publishers in the UK and around the world. On behalf of its members, it works diligently to grow and protect the value of their rights and ensure that creators are paid transparently and efficiently whenever their musical compositions and songs are streamed, downloaded, broadcast, performed and played in public. In 2021, 27 trillion performances of music were reported to PRS for Music with £677.2m paid out in royalties to its members, making it one of the world’s leading music collective management organisations. prsformusic.com

PRS for Music’s public performance licensing is now carried out on PRS for Music’s behalf by PPL PRS Ltd, the joint venture between PPL and PRS for Music.

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