Australia and Canadian Songwriters Make Sweet Music at Inaugural Virtual Camp
Australians and Canadians share much in common, from language to a love of rough-and-tumble sports.
Now, music publishers and songwriters from both countries have together for the love of music, and, for 40 creators, a first-of-its kind virtual camp.
An initiative of the Australasian Music Publishers Association (AMPAL) and Music Publishers Canada (MPC), the CREATE Song Camp connected songwriters from both sides of the Tasman with their counterparts from North America.
Music industry consultant Danny Keenan coordinated the virtual song camp was coordinated, which took place across three days in March, working on original songs in pop and singer-songwriter styles.
“As a music publisher it’s always incredible to be involved in the creation of a new song, and to hear what all of the amazing writers achieved together in such a short space of time was extraordinary,” comments AMPAL chair and Warner Chappell Music Australia managing director Matthew Capper.
Among the published, Australasian song camp participants were Ali Barter (Native Tongue Music Publishing), Amela (Perfect Pitch Publishing), ASHY (Native Tongue Music Publishing), Chí (Mushroom Music Publishing), Damien Leith (Wise Music), NGAIIRE (Wise Music).
They were joined by Canadian songwriters including Aaron Allen (Arts & Crafts), Alex Sampson (Sony Music Publishing), Demetri James (Ultra Publishing), FAMBA (Sony Music Publishing), Flower Face (Nettwerk) and others.
“A cowriting experience for any writer is invaluable in developing their craft,” explains AMPAL deputy chair and Perfect Pitch Publishing director Clive Hodson. “To do that with someone they’ve just met, remotely and in a short time frame is priceless on so many levels for a songwriter/performer.”
The export of songs from this part of the world is driving growth for domestic music publishers and is increasingly important in the globalised music market, notes AMPAL general manager Matthew O’Sullivan.
Collaborative sessions such as these, he notes, can ensure that Australian and New Zealand songs and stories “continue to be heard around the world.”
The cross-border virtual get-together doubled as an opportunity for a joint board meeting between MPC and AMPAL, which welcomed its newly-appointed directors Linda Bosidis (Mushroom Music Publishing), Karen Hamilton (120 Publishing Pty Ltd), Tim Prescott (Double Drummer Music) and Damian Rinaldi (Alberts).
Their elevation to the board comes after AMPAL directors Steve McPherson (formerly Hillsong Music Publishing Australia), Ian James (Mushroom Music Publishing), Philip Walker (Origin Music) and Rachel Kelly (formerly Downtown Music Publishing, now with Utopia Music) stepped down from the AMPAL board in 2021 after many years of service to the organisation.
AMPAL was formed in 1956 and today boasts more than 50 music publisher members, collectively representing north of 90% of the economic value of the music publishing sector.