Songwriter Sam is a hit with the Government

Sam Genders
Sam Genders
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A Sheffield singer songwriter is set to tour Europe thanks to a £15,000 Government grant - under a scheme that aims to boost British exports.

Sam Genders, leader of folk pop rock band Diagrams, is set to return to the Continent to build a wider audience base after a run of European dates.

The money is from UK Trade and Investment’s Music Export Growth Scheme which aims to boost the UK economy through increased ticket and music sales.

Another Sheffield singer, folk singer Philippa Hanna, aged 30, from Handsworth, received £12,000 to make a semi-permanent move to Nashville, Tennessee, where she hopes to record an album.

In the latest round, 13 independent UK music companies behind the careers of British talent have been awarded grants of between £5,000 and £30,000.

Londoner Sam relocated to Sheffield following the release of the band’s debut album in 2012.

He has just released a second, called Chromatics.

He said: “I’m delighted to be given this opportunity to reach out to a wider audience. The response in Europe has been tremendous so far. I am very much looking forward to returning!

“My label applied for the Music Export Grant scheme as I’ve been doing well in mainland Europe and the money is being made available to help develop the work that we – the band and record label Full Time Hobby – are doing there.

“The BPI administer the grants and it’s helped with tour support and with marketing the new album, Chromatics.

“We’ve just returned from a run of European dates and the money available means we can return if the right opportunities arise - such as European festivals - which are a great way of building a wider audience base.

“My previous band Tunng did well in Europe so this is a good way to build on that awareness.”

Diagrams is made up of Sam and a rotating collective of musicians.

The UK music industry is worth £3.8bn to the UK economy – and British artists account for one in eight of all artist albums sold around the world.

In the Music Export Growth Scheme, an artist can put funding towards tour support, overseas venue costs, international travel costs, marketing, promotion and public relations costs.

Without help, these factors can prevent an artist from being able to take that step from established UK musician to commercially successful international act.

Over the past 12 months, the scheme has received more than 300 applications and helped more than 70 UK music companies.