Horace Trubridge

General Secretary Elect of the Musicians’ Union

Horace is Assistant General Secretary of the Musicians’ Union (MU), a post he has held since 2003 after over a decade working for the MU. He oversees the work of the Union in all areas of the industry and represents over 30,000 musicians nationally and internationally.

Horace is also an executive committee member of the International Federation of Musicians (FIM) and a professor of the Royal Society of Musicians.

His music career began playing clarinet and saxophone semi-professionally from the age of 14.

He was a founder member of the band DARTS at the age of 18 and signed an independent record contract a year later.

Between 1976 and 1981 DARTS toured internationally and enjoyed considerable chart success including over a dozen UK top 10 singles, 3 gold albums and a platinum album. Horace wrote many songs for the band including the top ten hit “Get It”.

DARTS musically directed and starred in the hit West End musical “Yakety Yak” in 1982.

During the 1980’s Horace worked extensively as a session musician performing on many major label releases.

He changed track in the late 80’s and became a band manager and promoter, promoting the ICA Rock Weeks.

Horace started work for the British Musicians’ Union as Music Business Advisor in 1990.
There's No Such Thing as Over the Hill

There's No Such Thing as Over the Hill Anymore

When the band I was in was gathering interest from the music industry in the mid 1970s, we weren't having to compete with Gerry and the Pacemakers, The Searchers, The Hollies, The Tremolos, the Four Pennies, Heinz, Wayne Fontana, Amen Corner and all those other great bands from the 1960s, because they had either moved on to other careers or had jumped to the cabaret circuit.
11/04/2016 23:11 BST
Looking Backwards and

Looking Backwards and Forwards

What did we achieve in 2015? Well: We gave the Government a bloody nose when they tried to introduce a private copying exception with no fair compensation. We told them it wouldn't stand up in court, we told them that if they did it we would take them to a judicial review and we told them that if we went to a judicial review we would win.
21/01/2016 00:09 GMT
Reminiscing: Rock on the

Reminiscing: Rock on the Dole

I was still signing on at the dole office when Darts, the band I joined when I was just 18 years old, had their first top ten hit record. I signed off the dole when someone in the queue pointed out that they had seen me on <em>Top of the Pops </em>the week before.
27/11/2015 17:50 GMT
Music and Technology - Awkward

Music and Technology - Awkward Bedfellows

With hindsight, I am pretty sure that the record industry, in fleecing us over the price of a CD, sowed the seeds of their own downfall once the internet and Napster showed music fans that they didn't have to pay for recorded music if they didn't want to...
23/09/2015 14:18 BST
A Mad World, My

A Mad World, My Masters

So, what did we learn at South by South West this year? Well, firstly that it can rain in Texas and did, almost solidly for two days. Countless burger buns were transformed into deformed sponges and all the swag shops were selling umbrellas at exorbitant prices, which, mostly fell apart within minutes of use and in my case, before I had even left the shop.
21/04/2015 16:42 BST
No Business Like Showcasing

No Business Like Showcasing Business

Now it seems that any band in any country that reaches the point where they think they can and should be breaking into new territories is looking for a showcase to perform at. In fact, ironically, sometimes the only way for a UK act to get some interest from the UK music industry is to play at an international showcase outside of the UK!
24/02/2015 15:43 GMT

Taxing Times

The UK film and gaming industries have both enjoyed generous tax breaks over the last few years. It's now high time that grass roots musicians and music venues got a break.
11/01/2015 20:44 GMT
Catching the Big Fish in the

Catching the Big Fish in the Stream

If you went into a record shop and bought a CD - I know, it doesn't happen very often any more - of your favourite band and you found out that the money you paid was mostly going to the act that sold the most records that week and not your favourite band then you would be rightly miffed. Unfortunately, the current Spotify model works just like that.
08/12/2014 17:09 GMT
Has There Ever Been a Worse Time to Be a

Has There Ever Been a Worse Time to Be a Musician?

The coming of the age of austerity means that the big corporates that used to throw extravagant parties/conferences etc either simply can't afford to do so anymore or have decided that ostentatious displays of decadence and largesse are inappropriate in these straightened times.
28/10/2014 16:44 GMT
Censorship Is a Subjective

Censorship Is a Subjective Thing

Art and freedom of expression go hand in hand. I might find the lyrics to the Exodus song abhorrent but I would defend the bands right to explore their art form and challenge perceptions, and locking up a fan for posting lyrics on a Facebook wall is clearly bonkers.
02/10/2014 17:02 BST
Fear and the Foul Mouthed Saxophone

Fear and the Foul Mouthed Saxophone Player

I was fortunate in as much as I never suffered from stage fright. It might have been because I was in a nine-piece band and there is safety in numbers, or it might have been because I wasn't fronting the band, but in any case I was grateful for not having that burden.
02/10/2014 16:43 BST
We Don't Need No

We Don't Need No Education

Did you have a teacher who sparked an interest in a subject for you? Who went that extra mile and was so absorbed and enthused by their subject that you couldn't help but be in awe of them as a teacher, and years afterwards you can still remember how you couldn't wait for their lesson?
05/08/2014 11:26 BST
A Look Back at Glastonbury

A Look Back at Glastonbury 2014

On the Saturday night Metallica clashed with Pixies, Jake Bugg, John Grant, Bryan Ferry, Dexys Midnight Runners, MGMT and Mogwai. Now, granted, maybe not all those bands float your boat but it really rankles that you can't get to see them all.
09/07/2014 13:15 BST
Save the Music

Save the Music Venue

I still remember how hard it is to get a baby to go to sleep when there is a distracting noise. Nevertheless, if I chose to move into a flat or a house which is situated near a music venue then surely I'm likely to know that there will be times when I will hear the music coming from the venue, and if I have young children or a predilection for insomnia to contend with then maybe I should consider moving somewhere else.
15/06/2014 21:34 BST

National Disgrace

Does every member of the audience at this year's Proms have to see the oboe player in order to enjoy the solo? Of course not. Furthermore, if Nick Starr believes that actors pretending to be musicians is preferable to actual live musicians then why don't we just bung a tape on and fill the pit with actors at the Albert Hall? I know, I'm being absurd, but I didn't start it.
12/05/2014 14:50 BST
The BBC - Who Needs

The BBC - Who Needs It?

Knocking the BBC has become a national pastime and it's an easy thing to do because there is no other license fee funded public service broadcaster to compare it to. However, next time you are anywhere outside of the UK and you want to remind yourself of how precious our BBC really is, just turn on the TV or radio...
06/04/2014 15:09 BST
Okay to Sing, Just Don't

Okay to Sing, Just Don't Play!

Take a look at the UK album charts and it's there for all to see. Out of the top twenty albums, 14 of them are all male bands. Out of the six remaining acts three are solo female singers and the other three are male bands fronted by a female singer. So, here we are in 2014 and there is not one all-girl band in the top 20 album charts.
27/02/2014 17:54 GMT
Leopards and Spots - The 'B'

Leopards and Spots - The 'B' Side

Last month I wrote a piece entitled 'Leopards And Spots - Why The Labels Never Change'. It was about record companies and the relationship that they have with performers. I compared my own personal experience of record companies and publishers back in the 1970s with the contracts that I now see being offered to MU members on a weekly basis.
03/02/2014 12:20 GMT
Leopards and Spots - Why Record Labels Never

Leopards and Spots - Why Record Labels Never Change

Imagine that you take out a 20-year mortgage, pay back five times what you borrowed and the bank still owns your house at the end of it. Banks don't do that simply because it would not be allowed.
06/01/2014 17:22 GMT
Christmas Hits and It

Christmas Hits and It Hurts

My regret is the fact that we don't seem to get any quality Christmas-themed singles any more. Are we really going to be stuck listening to Slade, Roy Wood, Cliff, Wham etc for the rest of our December days? As great as some of these records may be, it would be nice to hear something fresh.
03/12/2013 17:24 GMT