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New protocol to keep live music alive in Yarra

15 Apr 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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AWME artist showcase submissions for 2014 are now open

1 Apr 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 launches strategic music industry paper

26 Mar 2014

Music Victoria has launched one of the most significant strategic plans ever prepared for the Victorian music industry.

The paper, entitled Music Victoria – Position and Priorities was prepared by state representative body Music Victoria and outlines the industry’s vision for the next four years. It includes 19 recommendations including:

  • Apply for Melbourne to become a UNESCO City of Music
  • Establish a Contemporary Music Centre with an interactive Hall of Fame
  • Establish a Regional Live Music Office and Strategy
  • Establish a Quick Response Grant Program for career-defining opportunities
  • Promote the Melbourne Music City brand to the world
  • Introduce two-tiered noise standards to differentiate between cultural clusters and quieter neighbourhoods

“The Victorian music sector has come along in leaps and bounds over the last four years,” says Music Victoria CEO Patrick Donovan. “But we cannot get complacent. Through the Live Music Roundtable, Music Victoria along with SLAM and FairGo4LiveMusic, has worked with the government to simply fix the broken regulatory system that was failing the music industry, by bringing back all ages gigs and committing to legislate the Agent of Change principle. This paper is about taking us forward and fulfilling the potential of the music industry.”
Music Victoria urges the government to take a holistic approach to deliver positive outcomes for the music sector which in turn will deliver broad economic and social benefits. The recommendations fall across not just the arts portfolio but a multitude of interconnected portfolios including Regional and Rural Development, Tourism and Major Events, Innovation Services and Small Business, and Employment and Trade. 

"We want to ensure the next Gotye, Vance Joy, Courtney Barnett or Hiatus Kaiyote don’t fall through the cracks, while increasing artist and audience participation, capitalising on music’s power as a unifying force to bring communities together and tell our stories and  deliver an economic and social dividend for Victoria. Victoria needs a strong independent peak body to facilitate these opportunities, see we need you to get behind your local representative organisation, Music Victoria, to continue our important work.”
Download the full Music Victoria – Position and Priorities report here.


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Make Some Noise - Hip Hop and Electronic Music Workshop

12 Jun 2013 Make Some Noise - Hip Hop and Electronic Music Workshop

As part of the City of Yarra's Leaps and Bounds Music Festival, Music Victoria presents 'Make Some Noise' - hip hop and electronic music workshops for both emerging and advanced artists.

Practical, real-world advice on topics including getting a gig, management, sampling, getting airplay, press releases, crowdfunding and grant writing for both emerging and advanced hip hop and electronic music practitioners.

Whether you're an MC, DJ, writer, performer or producer, join our panel of experts for advice and information. Speakers include M-Phazes, Nate Flagrant, Anthony Colombi, Andy Rantzen, Jon Hanlon and Chris Johnston.

There'll be two sessions to suit both beginners and more advanced artists. All ages welcome!

Free for Music Victoria members, or just $15 per session for non-members.

Saturday 6th July 2013

2.00-3.30pm (beginners) and 3.30-5.00pm (advanced)

First Floor
1/393 Brunswick St Fitzroy


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Census confirms Melbourne's status as one of world's Live Music Capitals

21 Mar 2013

Melbourne boasts at least 460 live music venues and live music contributes more than a $1billion to the Victorian economy per annum, according to the largest Live Music Census ever conducted in Victoria.

The Victorian Live Music Census 2012, which was carried out by Music Victoria in partnership with the City of Melbourne, NMIT and over 100 student volunteers, also found that on a typical Saturday night 97,000 patrons attend Melbourne’s live music venues and 900 musicians, 740 DJs, 237 production staff and 2,730 venue staff are employed.

The report also revealed that Melbourne hosts 62,000 popular music gigs annually – many featuring multiple-artists bills, attracting 14.4 million annual patron visits to small venues, major concerts and Melbourne-based music festivals.

“This is the largest survey of its type carried out in Victoria,” said Music Victoria CEO, Patrick Donovan, who said the organisation planned to complete the regional component of the census later this year. “It captures the most accurate snapshot of what our world-renowned industry looks like. This is the industry that Music Victoria proudly represents and if you’re passionate about this industry and want to support it, become a Music Victoria member during our Jump On The Bandwagon membership drive.”

“This report pieces together all the components which make Melbourne a world renowned music city,” added Chair of City of Melbourne Arts Portfolio Councillor, Rohan Leppert. “Melburnians have always loved their music scene, but now our understanding of that audience and our music scene is better than ever. From the live music venues, to the artists, musicians, producers and punters; Melbourne’s thriving music scene is thanks to all of you.”

“We look forward to continuing work with Music Victoria, and the industry, to ensure Melbourne’s music scene is supported and continues to grow.” 

Project organiser, Dobe Newton, added: “Being involved in this unique project with the future leaders of our industry was an exciting and rewarding experience,” he said. “Their hard work has confirmed Melbourne as one of the world’s great music cities. The data collected will be invaluable in helping to promote and protect this wonderful cultural asset and the jobs and joy it creates.”

The full report can be viewed at


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Music Victoria launches 'Melbourne Music City' guide digital app

21 Feb 2013

Victoria now has its first dedicated live music guide digital app with the launch of Melbourne Music City.

The free app, conceived by Music Victoria and sponsored by Tourism Victoria and City of Melbourne, follows the success of the first two editions of the physical Melbourne Music City guide.

The guide provides a comprehensive list, maps and contact details for live music venues and music stores in Victoria, in addition to a music festival calendar, resources and media sections for music fans and musicians.

The app is aimed at tourists visiting Victoria who are interesting in sampling the hugely diverse live music scene and record stores on offer in Melbourne and the rest of the State. Music lovers will be able to search for nearby venues and record stores, browse upcoming festivals, and call venues and access websites direct from their device.

The app is available now for free download on iPhone, iPad, Android and Blackberry on the iTunes App Store and Google Play by searching under ‘Melbourne Music City’.

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'Jump On The Bandwagon' membership drive 2013

18 Feb 2013

The annual Music Victoria 'Jump On The Bandwagon' membership drive kicks off for another year on March 18th until March 28th.

Jump on the bandwagon as a fully paid-up member during the membership drive and not only will you have access to all the member’s benefits and be in the running for some fabulous prizes, but you’ll help your peak body continue to nurture and support your music scene.

Jump On The Bandwagon 2013 banner

So what’s up for grabs? For a start, you have the chance to win one of five $500 Flight Centre vouchers, and from our friends at Hilton there’s a free night’s stay in an executive room with lounge benefits at Hilton on the Park, Melbourne.

As a member of Music Victoria you will also have access to the long list of member benefits: Virgin and Qantas excess baggage allowances for musicians; professional development workshops; and members only discounts and special offers.

You’ll also get the chance to attend the exclusive invite-only wrap party for members at Ding Dong Lounge on Thursday April 11th, featuring Henry Wagons and other special musical guests to be announced.

So what is Music Victoria? Music Victoria is the music industry peak body for Victoria; an independent and non-profit organisation supporting the growth, participation and development of the Victorian contemporary music industry across all genres.

Stay tuned for updates on prizes and offers for members. To find out how to make the most of your membership benefits, click here.

Show your support for contemporary music in Victoria and become a financial member of Music Victoria during the 2013 Jump On The Bandwagon membership drive! Apply online here.

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National SLAM Day 2013 - celebrating live music & small gigs

8 Feb 2013

After a huge debut in 2012, National SLAM Day is back!

On Saturday February 23rd 2013, musicians and music lovers will come together in the largest simultaneous celebration of Live Music and Small Gigs that’s ever been held in Australia, for the second annual SLAM Day.

National SLAM Day 2013_banner

On February 23rd 2012, over 150 gigs were held in small venues across the country from Perth to Port Douglas, Tamworth to Tennant Creek, Katherine to Kensington and with the support of musicians, venues, music fans and the media, the first ever SLAM Day was a massive success.

In 2013 SLAM Day falls on a Saturday - ‘gig day’ and already SLAM have been swamped with registration enquiries.  It's a race between the states to host the largest SLAM day, with WA and NSW challenging Victoria as Australia’s home of live music. Over 200 gigs have been registered as participating so far.

National SLAM Day is a campaign aimed at the broader community as an event that celebrates our local musicians and our small gigs. SLAM Day was embraced all around the country with thousands of musicians and tens of thousands of punters getting involved.

Support a SLAM Day gig in your town – any style, any genre. Small gigs can happen in your backyard, in a venue, in your community hall, in a cafe, on the street or in the park.

It’s easy to get involved and free to register, just head to


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Music Victoria launches second edition of the Melbourne Music City free guide

20 Nov 2012

Following the success of last year’s inaugural guide, Music Victoria is proud to announce the launch of the 2012 edition of Melbourne Music City - a guide to the Live Music Capital of Australia.

The Melbourne Music City guide helps music lovers find live music venues, record stores, festivals and other music-friendly resources in Melbourne and regional Victoria.

“You can catch a gig just about anywhere in Melbourne – from laneways to rooftops, bowls clubs, concert halls and pubs. For many of these venues, live music is its primary business, showcasing diverse, original music across rock, pop, roots, jazz, electronic and experimental spectrums.” said Music Victoria CEO, Patrick Donovan.

“Music Victoria encourages you music enthusiasts to treat the guide like a treasure map and wander around this amazing city, pop into one of the many dedicated record stores, visit landmarks such as AC/DC Lane and check out the incredible local music and venues we have on offer.”

Produced with the support of Tourism Victoria and the City of Melbourne, Melbourne Music City maps Melbourne’s main metropolitan entertainment hubs as well as venues in regional Victoria. The guide also includes a Victorian music festival timeline, a plotted history of key music events in the state plus information on gig guides, media, public transport and music-friendly accommodation.

Tourists to Melbourne and locals alike can find this free 66 page pocket-sized booklet at the Federation Square Visitor Centre and various music stores in Melbourne, as well as selected interstate cafes, venues and tourist hot spots. 

Austrade (the Australian Trade Commission) will distribute the guide through its offices in Los Angeles, New York, Tokyo, Toronto and Frankfurt, as well as through overseas embassies and consulates, Tourism Victoria will make them available at the Singapore leg of the Laneway Festival, and visitors to overseas music conferences can pick them up via the Sounds Australia stand.

A smartphone and iPad version of the guide will be available to download in late January, with interactive maps, links to handy resources for touring musicians and regularly updated content.


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'The case for regulatory reform' music industry position paper

13 Nov 2012

The State Government established the Live Music Roundtable as a permanent live music industry forum, bringing together music industry representatives, licensees of live music venues, government and Victoria Police.

Music Victoria, along with SLAM (Save Live Australia’s Music) and Fair Go 4 Live Music, spent many months preparing a policy position paper to make recommendations to remove barriers to live music.

The report ‘The case for regulatory reform’ addresses crucial issues faced by live music venues including liquor licensing, planning, environment protection, the Agent of Change, and other areas of the regulatory framework such as the building code.

The first roundtable meeting was held in July 2012 where we presented the report and the government has since taken the issues outlined in our report and set up a working group to work through the issues.

The next roundtable meeting will be held tomorrow (14th November) and we look forward to working with the Live Music Roundtable representatives on addressing and resolving the many barriers to live music in our state.

Read the report here: Music industry position paper - The case for regulatory reform (July 2012)

Music Victoria will be providing an update on the Agent of Change issue at the Face the Music conference at the Arts Centre on Friday 16th November at a special panel.

Melbourne Music City: An Endangered Species?
Members of the Roundtable will discuss the key issues and explain the complexities and priorities, provide an update on progress on areas such as regulatory reform and barriers for under age gigs, and discuss what needs to be done to maintain our vibrant live music scene.

Cate Carr (Director Liquor & Gambling Policy – Office of Liquor, Gaming and Racing)
Ashley Admiraal (Planning & Environment Advisor, Music Victoria / FairGo4LiveMusic)
Dr Kate Shaw (Future Fellow in Urban Planning & Geography, University of Melbourne)
Matthew Minchin (Senior Manager Portfolio Strategy – Environmental Policy Division, Department of Sustainability)
Patrick Donovan (CEO, Music Victoria)
Associate Professor Shane Homan (Music/Cultural Policy Researcher, Monash University)

Day: Friday 16th November
Time: 1.45 – 2.45pm
Location: Fairfax Studio, the Arts Centre (Level 3)

Tickets available from

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Live bands to play at Melbourne Airport as Music Victoria and City of Melbourne launch AirPlay project

5 Nov 2012

Music Victoria is partnering with the City of Melbourne to bring live music to Melbourne Airport on the eve of the busiest fortnight of music of the year in Victoria.

The artists – Mick Thomas’ Roving Commission, Benny Walker, Francolin, and Vikingo De Jerez - will play the first AirPlay pilot project (no pun intended) on two stages inside Melbourne Airport (outside Virgin domestic arrivals and outside PJ O’Brien’s bar in the International Terminal) from Wednesday 14th to Friday 16th November 2012 during peak passenger times between 5pm and 8pm.

Many band titles, songs, albums and labels have been inspired by airports – Angus and Julia Stones’ ‘Big Jet Plane’, Melbourne band Essendon Airport, record label Departed Sounds, and Brian Eno’s ‘Music for Airports’.

And now we can add Melbourne Airport’s AirPlay to the list.

“Musicians spend so much time going through airports and during a long tour, some airports can start to look the same,” said Mick Thomas, who will be launching the project with his band The Roving Commission on Wednesday 14th November.

“Here's a chance to say Melbourne is a vibrant music city with entertaining original music on the menu from start to finish.”

The artists will provide a taste of the many musical treats on offer at festivals, conferences and awards held in Melbourne during the last two weeks of November, including the Australasian World Music Expo (AWME), Face The Music, Melbourne Music Week, Fitzroy’s Johnston Street Fiesta and The Age EG Awards.

“Melbourne is the world’s most liveable city and our live music scene plays a large part in maintaining our excellent reputation for world class entertainment,” Melbourne’s Lord Mayor Robert Doyle said.

“The City of Melbourne is proud to have contributed to the Airplay pilot project, an innovative way of welcoming visitors to our city.”

“As the gateway to Australia’s live music capital, we’re delighted to support Music Victoria during this exciting time for music, “said Matt Francis, Corporate & Public Affairs General Manager at Melbourne Airport.

“Having some of our local musical talent playing at the airport will be a great way to welcome our passengers and visitors and let them experience some of the amazing talent our city has to offer.”

Music Victoria CEO Patrick Donovan commended Melbourne Airport and the City of Melbourne for getting behind the project.

“It says a lot to visitors to Melbourne when they are greeted by wonderful Victorian songs and melodies,” said Donovan, who said the idea was inspired by a similar project at airports in strong music cities such as New Orleans, Austin and Memphis.

“Live music is one of our greatest assets, so it’s appropriate that we are showing it off. We will also have the new ‘Melbourne Music City’ guide available to help visitors find their favourite styles of music.”

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RMIT presents M.A.V.I.S. - a fundraiser for Music Victoria

30 Aug 2012

RMIT's Sound Production and Audio Visual Students (M.A.V.I.S) present a night showcasing some of Melbourne’s best bands across two stages at the Corner Hotel – metal warlords Barbarion, master of ethereal delicacies Wintercoats, psychedelic rock’n’roll five piece Wolfy & The Bat Cubs, Alfords Band of Bullwinkles from the mean streets of Brunswick, and singer songwriter Celery.

This year this event will be produced as a fundraiser aiding Music Victoria, the not-for-profit contemporary music peak body. 

RMIT Presents M.A.V.I.S.
Monday 17th September 2012
Corner Hotel, Richmond

Doors open 7.30pm
Tickets $20 / $15 concession and Music Victoria members
On sale now via the Corner Hotel Box Office and ph: 9427 9198 

The MAVIS Project has been an annual event for several years, working as a major collaborative project between RMIT's final year Sound Production and Audio Visual Technology students with valuable support and mentoring from key industry figures and businesses.

The night is a critical opportunity for students to apply their skills in recording, live sound, filming, event planning and staging in a professional setting using industry standard equipment.

A raffle / auction will also be held on the night with great prizes.

Wolfy & The Bat Cubs:
Alfords Band of Bullwinkles:
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