UK Metal Merger have launched a huge charity prize draw where fans can win rare items of metal memorabilia. With items donated by bands including Black Sabbath, Motörhead and Judas Priest, the #ILoveMetal prize draw aims to raise funds for Stagehand: a charity providing hardship funding and mental health support for workers in the live music industry.
Via a £5 entry through a crowdfunder page, fans can enter the prize draw multiple times until the draw ends on June 11. All winners will be contacted on June 18.
Some of the items in the draw include a rare Black Sabbath book signed by the group’s Tony Iommi, an Epiphone Signature SG Custom also signed by Iommi, two VIP passes for Download 2022, a framed Judas Priest ‘Epitaph’ presentation which has been signed by Rob Halford, Glenn Tipton, Richie Faulkner, Ian Hill and Scott Travis.
The prizes are grouped into themed “bundles” with collections of prizes from Earache Records, Motörhead, My Dying Bride and more also up for grabs.
Stagehand’s #ILoveLive campaign is described on UK Metal Merger’s crowdfunder page as aiming to “[provide] financial help for all UK stage crew who are in the greatest need. Stage crew seem to be the forgotten ones in the current pandemic. They’re the unsung heroes of the live entertainment world. Without them shows just couldn’t happen.”
They added: “The impact of Covid-19 has been devastating for the whole music industry but particularly for the stage techs, sound engineers, guitar techs, keyboard techs, drum techs, stage managers, production managers, tour managers and other live support personnel who make shows possible.
“With no shows since March 2020, crew’s income has been slashed with many finding that they are ineligible for any kind of government financial aid. Many are in desperate need and most are sitting with mental health issues.”
Earlier this year, UK music industry figures called on the government to commit more economic support to the sector following the UK’s “roadmap” out of lockdown.
LIVE CEO Greg Parmley asked the government to provide the economic support needed for the music industry to get back to normal. “Any return to normality for live music could be months behind the rest of the economy.
“The Chancellor must acknowledge our extended closure in the Budget and provide the economic support needed to ensure the jobs and livelihoods of the hundreds of thousands of people that work in our industry exist as we come through this pandemic.”