Bizarre, Draconian Philadelphia Bill Aims to Create a Registry of Musicians Who Play the City

Jes Skolnik

Philadelphia's Hop Along play a show in 2014. Photo by Nik Vechery.

Philadelphia councilman Mark Squilla has put forth an attempt to amend the “Special Amendment Occupancies” section of that city’s code, citing public safety; the bill would require club, bar and other venue owners to keep a formal registry of the name, address and phone number of any musician (band member, rapper or DJ) who plays their venue and to share that personal information with police on demand. While arguably constitutional and difficult to enforce, the idea of this bill is obviously concerning to Philadelphia’s thriving live music community and anyone who has ever or will ever play or book a show there.

There is a petition actively circulating from and through Philly’s musical community to oppose the bill, and promoter Sean Agnew, speaking to BillyPenn, who broke the story, puts forward the idea of working with the city council to craft a more reasonable bill: “I’m just trying to think of a situation where the police want the addresses and numbers of the 10+ members of Arcade Fire.”

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