Musicians Succeed in Reversing Prison Guitar String Ban

0
0
Subscribe to Billy Bragg alerts

Musical campaigners have successfully reversed a ban that had prevented inmates of British prisons from being able to use steel strings on guitars.

Billy Bragg prison guitar
Billy Bragg had led the campaign to reverse the steel guitar string ban in British prisons

The ban had meant that the only strings available to inmates were nylon ones, used primarily for classical and Spanish styles and largely unsuitable for steel-strung acoustic guitars due to the way that they’re attached. But now steel strings will be available again, to be paid for out of prisoners’ wages and earned on a privileges basis at the discretion of individual governors.

Conservative Justice minister Chris Grayling had announced the ban on steel strings back in April of this year on the basis of they could potentially be used as weapons. It sparked an immediate protest by a host of musical stars including Billy Bragg, former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr, Richard Hawley and Dave Gilmour, who published an open letter criticising the decision in The Guardian.

Bragg, affectionately referred to as ‘the Bard of Barking’ by his fans, has shown a great deal of dedication to the concept of rehabilitation through music. He started the ‘Jail Guitar Doors’ initiative with former Clash guitarist Mick Jones back in 2007 that looked to source guitars for prisons. He said about the decision "I've had a number of projects involving guitars on hold which now will be able to go ahead, and will allow those using music in prisons to get on with this important work."

MORE: Billy Bragg likens Kasabian to Spinal Tap

Bragg’s campaign also gained support in political and professional circles. Labour MP Kevin Brennan (Cardiff West constituency) had supported the musicians’ campaign in parliament, while the Prison Reform Trust also welcomed the reversal of Grayling’s decision.


Contactmusic

Tags: Billy Bragg - Johnny Marr - Richard Hawley

0
0
Subscribe to Billy Bragg alerts
Advertisement

More Billy Bragg

Has Taylor Swift Been Given a Sack Full of Cash from Sergey Brin?

Taylor Swift's representatives have been forced to deny that the superstar pulled her music from Spotify after signing a megabucks deal with Google. Swift removed...

Musicians Succeed in Reversing Prison Guitar String Ban

Musical campaigners have successfully reversed a ban that had prevented inmates of British prisons from being able to use steel strings on guitars.Billy Bragg had...

Billy Bragg Likens Kasabian's Swagger to Spinal Tap's Satire

Kasabian were the subject of derision when they chose to divulge the lyrics, "Horsemeat in the burgers, people commit murders, everyone’s on bugle, we’re being...

Richard Hawley And Grandmaster Flash Among Camp Bestival 2013 Highlights [Photos]

Richard Hawley plays one of his many splendid guitars.Camp Bestival 2013 took over the weekend (August 2nd - 4th) at Lulworth Castle in Dorset last...

Advertisement

A New England Means A New Personal Direction For Billy Bragg On New Album

One of the biggest politically-minded voices left in music has announced a move away from his previous statement-laden songs to focus more on personal relationships....

Billy Bragg - Mr Love and Justice

Billy BraggMr Love and JusticeAlbum ReviewSomething of a dual celebration is marked by this release, coinciding as it does with Bragg's fiftieth birthday and him...

Billy Bragg - Volume 2

Billy Bragg Volume 2 Album ReviewAfter the release of Volume 1 of the Billy Bragg re-releases, comes the natural progression that is Volume 2. Consisting...

Billy Bragg - Volume 1

Billy BraggVolume 1Album ReviewAs a contemporary British social icon, Billy Bragg is up there with strong tea, miserable weather and queues in post offices. This...

Advertisement

Comments

Billy Bragg Newsletter

Subscribe to this news alert service to receive news and reviews on Billy Bragg

Unsubscribe | Unsubscribe All