I’m an advocate for several causes and organisations that I have personal connections with. Promoting these causes is often linked to my music. Save Soho began as a way to give something back to the performing arts sector in London – the culture that for over 20 years, has been an invaluable platform for me as an artist. It’s a part of our culture that I believe deserves as rich a future as it’s history, for all independent and emerging artists. My role as a spokesperson for grassroots music venues and music cities has meant that I have developed a strong relationship with the Music Venue Trust and their incredible work.
Given my LGBT parentage having a powerful influence on my outlook on life (tolerance, acceptance and the liberty of individuals) means those values are always front and centre in my work. Love as a human right may seem an obvious concept to those of us who are free to love who and how we wish to love. But there are many communities in the world who are not afforded liberty and justice in the way that some of us enjoy, and ultimately take for granted. This is something I actively promote with my What Love Would Want projects and have been proud to assist Amnesty International in promoting their humanitarian work.
The value placed on grass roots music venues in the United Kingdom is something that I feel strongly about and have campaigned for both for venues in Soho and all over the country.
The outdated idea that local councils and government have shared about music venues as not being a viable business is an attitude that Mark Davyd and Beverley Whitrick have challenged through their organisation The Music Venue Trust. We became friends when I began Save Soho and it has become apparent that we were both fighting for the same thing.
To re-evaluate the financial and cultural contribution that music venues make in the United Kingdom. If you have ever been to a small gig and seen a band that you loved, please take the time to signup with Music Venue Trust and support them in the vital work they do for both artists and people who love live music.
I did my first gig for Amnesty UK back in 1996 at the Reading Music Festival. Their work in defending human rights across the globe is brave, inspiring and fundamental to our collective hope for a better world.
In 2017, I was delighted to assist them at several events in support of their Love Is A Human Right campaign with performances of my song What Love Would Want at The Russian Embassy, The Isle of Wight Festival and Soho’s St Anne’s Churchyard in an action of solidarity for gay marriage in Northern Ireland. The LGBT Amnesty group are indefatigable in their efforts to promote equality for people who do not have liberty and justice when it comes to love. This is something I feel particularly strongly about as my mother Polly Perkins was a trailblazer for both women’s equality and gay rights in the 70’s and without the tolerance for same sex couples that the United Kingdom now celebrates, I would not have had an easy childhood as the son of a gay woman.
At the beginning of a new century it is now essential to embrace and take action wherever possible to promote integration and put an end to separation. Please support Amnesty UK.
I have been privileged to attend several events with Human Rights Campaigner Peter Tatchell and I am keen to see his work supported by as many people as possible. Peter has devoted his life to fighting for human rights all over the world for half a century. He has taken personal risks in his quest to achieve equality and fairness for human beings who have suffered as a result of unjust laws and persecution. His bravery was once seen as foolhardy and without reason in the UK. Today, many of the changes he has fought for have become legislation and all too often, acknowledgement of his influence in those changes can sometimes be overlooked. No matter, he continues to fight forward for us all. Please support Peter Tatchell and his extraordinary work if you care about human rights.
Save Soho was created on December 1st 2014 by myself and actor Stephen Fry after the closure and repossession of world renown club Madame Jojo’s. Under’s our instigation, a coalition of performers, residents and politicians came together out of concern for the future of Soho’s historic role as a national platform for the performing arts.
Save Soho‘s aim is to protect and nurture the future of performing arts venues in Soho and promote the voices of all those who share our concerns. We reach out to to the landowners, so that we can offer them the rich experience of all our supporters in the entertainment industry to advise on future plans. Together, we hope to safeguard the future of the performing arts in Soho.
Since our success of overturning the landlord’s decision to turn Madame Jojo’s into a restaurant, as well as stopping Transport for London from closing down Soho Sq to become a work depot, Save Soho now lends the influence of it’s committee members to a wide range of issues that arise in the area and we will continue to do so whilst Soho is under any threat in the future.
“Save Soho is not about shrieking at landowners or trying to shame them or anything of that nature. Save Soho is really hoping to be given a small consultational part in their plans.” Stephen Fry, Chairman of Save Soho
“Soho has always depended on building around and adding to what has gone before, not by replacing it.” Tim Arnold, Founder of Save Soho
Keeping Soho inclusive, not exclusive. Save Soho is an independent group with no affiliations to other Soho groups or organisations. Sign up with Save Soho: www.savesoho.com.