Sunak told ITV News on Tuesday (October 6) that people “in all walks of life” will have to consider changing the jobs they do in certain industries, leading to widespread derision of the idea – and the accompanying government website suggesting alternative careers – from various musicians including Liam Gallagher and Johnny Marr.
Now veteran drum ‘n’ bass DJ Goldie has joined the list of dissenting voices, accusing the Chancellor of trying to “abandon” a previously lucrative industry.
Speaking to Mixmag, the Metalheadz co-founder said: “It’s the biggest load of bollocks ever. You’re talking about Rishi Sunak – a former hedge fund manager, a very privileged young man. He has no sense of what the arts are all about.
“Ravers have created an infrastructure in the UK for all these above-board companies to invest – including hedge funds – in rave culture. All these big corporations are tied into [dance music culture]. We came a long way, us ravers, and now you want to abandon us? Cheers for that one mate. I think it’s a travesty.”
Goldie directly criticised Sunak’s comments about retraining, as well as emphasising the size and scale of dance music as an economic force in the UK.
“The industry is going to be doomed. What are you going to retrain me to do? Because you can’t paint my canvas or make my sculptures,” he said.
“This isn’t about a few ravers going out and listening to fruity tunes, it’s about art supporting the economy but the government doesn’t take it seriously. But I take it very seriously.”
He added: “The economic contribution and all of the jobs [that nightlife supports]. And it gives people a pick-me-up to go to the theatre on a Friday night or to go and see Hype or Andy C play or to go to the Royal Albert Hall to see a concert,” he said.
Back in July, it was announced that some government funding was available for the dance music industry following the #LetUsDance campaign.
The campaign was established to support the UK’s dance music scene, and led to the UK government’s pledge of a £500m recovery fund to help maintain the industry.
You can sign the petition, which has now attracted over 140,000 signatures, via the official parliamentary petition page here.