How musicians can prepare for life after COVID


On the road again: how musicians can get set for touring again in 2021

With COVID-19 vaccines still rolling out across the UK, many musicians are clinging on to fading dreams of playing live gigs this year. Even as a fan, I can’t wait to be in a crowd to watch my favourite bands again.

Last year was awful for musicians. In fact, it was awful for everyone in the events sector due to the ongoing pandemic. Gig venues up and down the country were forced to close. Weddings were postponed and with that wedding singers lost work. Even buskers were told to stay at home.

The 2021 Glastonbury Festival has already been postponed for a second year in a row. Organisers of other events are keeping their options open, ready for live music to return when they get the green light or perhaps to go virtual, although I’m sure we’ve all had enough of living online now.

But with uncertainty over when lockdown restrictions will begin to ease, it’s worth spending time now to think about steps you can take to better manage your music business.

Allowable expenses

In a normal year, you’re probably used to claiming back the costs involved with travel, accommodation or advertising your gigs. You can still do this when life returns to normal, but it’s not a priority now.

There’s a raft of tax deductions available for musicians, all of which I can identify for you to lower the cost of your next tax bill. Those might be costs involved with repairing an instrument or covering recording fees.

Think about how you record these expenses. As long as you keep accurate records of your expenditure, I should be able to claim them as a capital allowance.

You might also be eligible for the £1 million annual investment if you invest in any plant or machinery, such as vehicles, office equipment or computers to name three examples.

Playing abroad

If you’re fortunate enough to be able to play gigs abroad while the rest of us are in lockdown, be aware the UK has double-taxation agreements in place with many countries.

These aim to ensure you won’t pay tax twice on the same income, but how this treatment applies also depends on your residence or domicile status (whether your permanent address is in the UK or overseas).

If you happen to play an event in a country not covered by a double-taxation treaty, I can help you comply with the legislation and minimise what tax you might owe in this country or abroad.

Are you tax-efficient?

If you’re a musician who needs help with recording your expenses, planning your business or you simply want me to handle your accounts, give me a call on 07803 782100 or email me at