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Greens urge vouchers for NSW youth to revive live music

The NSW Greens are proposing a vouchers scheme in a bid to revive the state's ailing live music scene.

Spokeswoman Cate Faehrmann says young people could boost the sector if given $200 worth of vouchers in a move similar to the government's popular Dine and Discover program.

"Music, arts and culture are a major driver of economic activity across NSW and for years these sectors have been treated with contempt by this government," she said on Tuesday.

Under the proposal, 18- to 25-year-olds would be given four $50 vouchers to spend on live music events.

The money could be used on any type of gig including festivals, DJ sets, small acoustic performances or those by international artists.

The policy has been endorsed by Sydney musicians and promoters, who say the young are vital to live music.

"The younger age group would have gone through COVID-19 and therefore wouldn't have had an ability to see live music," Dale Harrison, bassist in hip hop group The Herd, told AAP.

"You want a venue to be filled with young people because they're going to be the people that continue on the path of your career," said the musician, who also does production management for Sydney-based label Elefant Traks.

Independent artist Jannah Beth says many young people are struggling to re-engage with music after the pandemic.

"Being able to afford that ticket is definitely something that's a struggle with rising living costs," she said.

"People have less disposable income."

Creative industries took a battering during COVID, losing $130 million in revenue, and a number of key live music venues closed for good.

According to data recently revealed by Labor, just 133 of them were still operating in NSW after the pandemic and impact of lockout laws.

"Without a significant funding boost to our arts and creative sectors, we run the risk of losing a generation of artists and the closure of more iconic venues across the state," Ms Faehrmann said.

The Greens believe the vouchers could turn NSW into the country's cultural capital again, she said.

"It's a brilliant idea to not only allow young people to experience live music and culture more often but also give a boost to Sydney's nightlife," said Alexander Antoniou, who plays drums in contemporary jazz outfit Catstronaut.

Labor last month made a major commitment to the NSW music sector, pledging $103 million in support funding over four years if elected to government on March 25.