New protocol to keep live music alive in Yarra

15 April 2014

Yarra Council has pledged to work with peak music bodies to develop new ways to support live music venues facing compliance and operating issues.

Early discussions with Music Victoria and the National Live Music Office have focused on the development of a protocol to facilitate a more cooperative relationship between Council and live music venues when complaints about noise or amenity issues arise.

Mayor Jackie Fristacky said the protocol was about approaching issues in a collaborative way that recognises the challenges some live music businesses face so that solutions can be reached.

“We recognise that live music venues in Yarra face increasing pressures as more people choose to live in the inner city,” Cr Fristacky said.

“Council still has a responsibility to ensure venues comply with state and local laws, but we’re also acknowledging that sometimes their operating issues are complex and need time to be worked through.

“It’s when those complex issues arise that we would be seeking Music Victoria’s involvement, not so much as a mediator, but as a party that can provide practical advice to Council as well as venue owners and licensees on potential solutions.

Announcing the protocol at the launch of the Yarra’s Leaps and Bounds Music Festival on Wednesday 9th April, Cr Fristacky said the approach was about getting the right people together in room early to discuss solutions.

She said the State Government’s commitment to introduce the ‘Agent of Change’ principle into the Victorian Planning Scheme was a positive sign for local live music, but that the positive change also needed to be backed by innovative policy at the local level.

“The introduction of the ‘Agent of Change’ principle would make developers and new residents responsible for sound proofing their properties if they choose to move near an operating live music venue,” she said.

“That would give Yarra’s live music venues some more certainty about the viability of their operating conditions, but Council would also need to continue exploring new ways to support venues.”

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Leaps and Bounds Music Festival 2014

11 April 2014

The City of Yarra is pleased to announce the second annual 'Leaps and Bounds Music Festival'.
Following an incredibly successful year in 2013, Leaps and Bounds will run from Friday 4th - Sunday 20th July 2014 and over 40 traditional venues from The Corner Hotel (the largest venue in the area) to Longplay (one of the smallest) will be involved.

The emphasis of the festival is local - local performers and local audiences - while also honouring those that come to live and perform in the area from places far and wide.

Events are that are returning in 2014 include:

- Yarra Songs at The Yarra Hotel with Jon Von Goes
- Bus Tours with Bruce Milne through iconic sites in Yarra
- PBS FM Live to Air with David Heard - Yarra's Citizen of the Year
- Aarght Records and The Bird Club presents 3 Sunday afternoons in July at pop up music venue Copacabana
- Push FreeZa Summit – Music Industry Training and Information for young people at Fitzroy Town Hall
- Music Victoria panels – One panel on funding advice for the music industry, and one focused on the hard rock/metal genre

New events this year include:

- Charles Jenkins presenting a night of songs about the history of Melbourne at The Fitzroy Reading Room
- Leaps and Bounds Venue Passport – pick it up at your local venue and get it stamped when you attend gigs for special rewards and prizes
- Music Industry Open Day – 20 music businesses to open their doors to the public to see the ins and outs of what happens within the industry in Yarra
- Ramblin’ Dan Brodie – Dan will play 6 of the smallest venues in Yarra across the 17 days of the festival
- Living Legends Series – a series of shows dedicated to iconic musicians that live and work within the City Of Yarra

Leaps and Bounds Music Festival is proudly presented by City of Yarra, Music Victoria & PBS FM with the support of the Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation.

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Music Victoria releases Regional Live Music Census report

6 April 2014

Regional live music contributes $276.2 million to the state economy but needs a co-ordinated state wide strategy and dedicated ‘one-stop shop’ office to help stimulate the regional touring circuit, according to Music Victoria’s Regional Live Music Census 2013.

The report, compiled over the last six months by Music Victoria in collaboration with NMIT, RMIT, Box Hill Institute, Victoria University and JMC Academy, and set to be launched in Ballarat on 4th April, found that the 3.8 million patrons attended small venues and festival gigs in regional areas. 37% of venues reported an increase in patronage in the last 12 months, 17% reported a decrease and 46% estimated their patronage level as the same.

“The report demonstrates the value of live music activity to the regional economy and its importance in job creation,” said author Dobe Newton. “Nevertheless, a significant number of operators are increasingly impacted by the regulatory system - just as are their counterparts in metro venues. A coordinated effort involving a wide range of stakeholders including regional artists and venues, industry and local government will help to ensure long-term health and growth.”

In the survey, regional venue operators were asked to comment on matters affecting their provision of live music performances, and make recommendations to improve their viability. Victorian artists, agents and promoters were also consulted.

Report recommendations include:

  • The implementation on a Regional Live Music Plan with a dedicated regional live music office. Its primary purpose would be to act as a one-stop-shop to build relationships and liaise between musicians, venues and industry, including promoters and booking agents.
  • Encourage councils to develop their own tailored music action plan, based on Wollongong’s Live Music Action Plan.
  • Reduce red tape and liquor licensing fees to make it easier to host original live music.
  • Host live music workshops to promote the Live Music Best Practice Guide.
  • Encourage independent mediation between venues and residents in the case of an amenity dispute.
  • Investigate opportunities for improved transport at night and maintain existing services.
  • Encourage the sector to pro-actively contribute to a comprehensive gig guide and encourage venues to routinely log their events.
  • Encourage the music sector to meet regularly at a live music venue to investigate issues facing the live music scene.
  • Investigate opportunities for improved transport at night and maintain existing services.

Download the Regional Live Music Census.

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AWME artist showcase submissions for 2014 are now open

1 April 2014

Australasian World Music Expo (AWME) is Australasia's premier roots music industry showcase, conference and trade event, held in Melbourne in November. Artist Showcase Submissions are now open for the 2014 event.

Artists / bands wishing to showcase at AWME 2014 are required to meet and fulfil the showcase criteria and conditions.

Submissions close on Friday 2nd May 2014. The AWME programming team will assess all submissions received and notify successful applicants by the middle of August 2014.

For all details and to make a submission, go to the AWME website:

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Music Victoria and Sounds Australia present ‘What Is Export Ready?’ workshop and one-on-one sessions

1 April 2014

Ready to take your music overseas? Music Victoria and Sounds Australia present a workshop on Tuesday 15th April to discuss how - and when - to get 'export ready'. You'll also have the chance to participate in one-on-one feedback sessions on Wednesday 16th April.

Sounds Australia’s Export Music Producer Glenn Dickie will discuss the ins and outs of what it is to be “Export Ready”, the differences between a gig and a showcase, what it takes to have cut through and debate the pros and cons of using one of the many international music conferences around the world to infiltrate international markets with artists and managers who have experienced it firsthand.

Glenn Dickie - Sounds Australia
Nick O’Byrne – Courtney Barnett / AIR / BIGSOUND
Alastair Burns – Jordie Lane / Marlon Williams / The Melbourne Folk Club
Helen Croome – Gossling

DATE:      Tuesday 15th April 2014
TIME:       6.00 - 8.00pm
Fitzroy Town Hall Reading Room
                  201 Napier Street, Fitzroy

Free for members of Music Victoria, $10 for non-members.
Bookings via

Please contact the Music Victoria office at for more information or booking assistance.

Glenn Dickie will also be conducting exclusive half-hour export strategy sessions with export-ready bands and managers at Music Victoria’s offices in Brunswick on Wednesday 16th April. This is a great opportunity to get one-on-one feedback and advice on how to step to the next international level.

Places are limited so make a booking request now via Please include your full name, band or artist name, preferred time (between 10am and 5pm) and your Music Victoria membership number (if applicable).

Anyone looking to participate in the one-on-one sessions must be able to attend the Tuesday evening session and should be looking to take part in an international music conference within the next 12 months.

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