In perhaps a protectionist move, America has tightened restrictions for artists who want to tour the US.
According to Billboard it may cost artists as much as $6000 to obtain all of the proper paper work to cross into the US and make some money. No new laws have been enacted, but instead the immigration department has a choose a more strict interpretation of the current laws.
As expected this has already caused some problems. Especially for Speech Debelle who had the momentum of her Mercury Prize slowed down when she could not attend CMJ in New York recently.
So if your a foreign act does that mean stop touring the States?
Europe and the UK have always been good to artists. With the help of YouTube, MySpace, and Facebook analytics you can see exactly where your audience is and go to them. Maybe this will force artists and managers to make faster inroads into the BRICK countries. Or maybe this is just a wake up call that if you’re going to tour ANYWHERE you should have the proper documents. Nobody likes being hassled by the Government.[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=58Bd8d8DSDo]