Industrial Strength: The biggest stories in the music biz this week
FISHER GOES GOLD WITH ‘LOSING IT’
Australian surfer-turned DJ and producer Fisher’s hit “Losing It” has been certified gold, his local record label etcetc revealed.
It was one of the most played and requested songs on triple j last year.
Not only that but it’s up for best dance Grammy after reaching #1 spot on the Billboard Dance chart in the US and the top 50 of the worldwide Shazam chart.
More recently “Losing It” cracked b-list rotation on BBC Radio 1 and climbed into the top 10 of the UK Shazam chart.
Aden Mullens, general manager of etcetc, said, “The early support out of Australia was a key part of Fisher’s most recent global success with ‘Losing It’.
“Australians doing well overseas is really a rising tide for our entire domestic industry.”
Having wrapped a run of sold-out shows and festivals across Australia including Field Day and Origin Fields, Fisher heads back to the US to play three sold-out shows at the Shrine Expo Hall in Los Angeles and appears at Coachella in April.
FREMANTLE GETS NEW VENUE
Fremantle gets a New Orleans-style 200-seat jazz and blues venue, Duke of George, tonight.
Set up by WAAPA graduate Renee Coyle in the basement of the Brush Factory, Fridays has a 9 pm “supper club” format while Saturdays are a dinner show.
The club also serves French Quarter Bourbon Street-style food.
NEW PR AGENCY FOR VIVID
After a pitch process, Destination NSW has appointed The Mint Partners PR agency to handle media for Vivid Sydney, taking over from Red Agency.
Mint will chew up (you see what we did there) the festival’s light, music and ideas pillars through traditional, digital and social outlets to the 2 million tourists who turn up with bulging wallets worth $172 million to spend here.
FBI EXCEEDS 500,000 LISTENERS
After 16 years in operation, the McNair community radio survey for 2018 notes that Sydney community radio station FBi hit new listener and listening time milestones.
Aimed at the 18—24 demographic, FBi, recorded 504,000 average monthly listeners.
The average time listening rose by 2 ½ hours to 12 hours, with the weekday breakfast and morning show numbers doubling.
Managing director Nikki Brogan said: “The survey numbers are a clear vindication of our commitment to championing new sounds and diverse, emerging voices.”
61% of its most played tracks were from Sydney (top of the list being Cooked” by Western Sydney hip hop duo Slim Set), 71% from around Australia, and 44% from female, trans and non-binary artists.
TWO ARRESTS OVER FOMO SYDNEY
With the eyes of the nation firmly on them after the death of 19-year-old Alex Ross-King at the Sydney FOMO festival from a suspected drug overdose, police preparing a report for the coroner were quick to move.
Four days later, a 20-year-old man and a 23-year-old man received a visit at a granny flat in Mount Elliot in the Central Coast.
The blueys allege they found 26 MDMA capsules, 14 grams of suspected ice and $1275 in cash.
Both men face Gosford Local Court on Tuesday, February 5.
JET, LIVING END, ADDED TO ADELAIDE RACE
Is it possible that the roar of the racers might be overshadowed by that of the race entertainment at the Superloop Adelaide 500?
Jet and The Living End have been added to the offer, on the March 2 Saturday night.
All three nights will feature Bands on Track – emerging local acts chosen by Music SA.
This year, the concert stage will relocate closer to the action, moving from the Christian Brothers College Oval to the front of the Victoria Park grandstand.
The Friday has Vance Joy and Amy Shark while Sunday has Red Hot Chili Peppers.
ALLEGATIONS AGAINST KIWI MUSO SEES BAND DROPPED
Allegations against New Zealand musician Mark Turner have led to the band he was with, London-based Superorganism, to be dropped by their UK record label Lil Chief Records due to “unresolved” allegations of sexual misconduct.
Turner was in NZ band The Eversons. In 2015, he and its three other members helped form Superorganism, now an eight-piece.
Lil Chief Records said that between 2012 and 2013, allegations were made against Turner, which he denied.
However last week, according to Pitchfork, Turner filed restraining orders against two women who spoke out against him on social media.
One was his former girlfriend and bandmate, Johanna Freeman, the other a musician known only as June.
Pitchfork reported the legal proceedings were filed in 2013 in Auckland District Court and settled on a confidential basis.
NARRABEEN RSL HIT WITH NOISE WOES
Narrabeen RSL on Sydney’s northern beaches has been slapped with an order which restricts amplified gigs inside, and music to end by 10.30 pm on Fridays and Sundays, and 11.30 pm on Saturdays.
The club claims it was the result of one formal complaint, but Liquor & Gambling NSW says there were numerous ones.
MUSICAL CHAIRS: FESTIVALS AND RADIO
Will Dawson is new GM and deputy CEO of Melbourne Fringe. He was executive director of Emerging Writers Festival.
Louise Bezzina is the new artistic director for Brisbane Festival, presenting her first one in 2020. The founding artistic director and CEO of the Gold Coast’s Bleach* festival, Bezzina will present her final Bleach* in April.
One time The Music Network editor Brynn Davies began this week as deputy editor of NOVA Entertainment’s digital operations.
Western Sydney DJ and Guitar Hero addict Ebony Boadu has taken over triple j House Party on Saturday evenings.
Southern Cross Austereo’s chief creative officer, Guy Dobson, has left, saying, “After ten years in some high-level roles, I feel it’s time to move on and chase down other adventures and opportunities.”
Kieran Simpson returns to Australian Radio Network as digital content director of Pure Gold Network and Conversant Media’s sports site The Roar. He was most recently a digital content producer at SCA’s 2DayFM in Sydney.
PUNK ‘ZINE TO END PRINT RUN
After 36 years and more than 400 issues, San Francisco’s punk fanzine Maximum Rocknroll has decided that this year it will end the print format.
Instead, it will continue to spread the mission globally online and as part of a radio show.
CITY OF SYDNEY CALLS FOR VENUES TO MUSIC LOVERS WITH DISABILITIES
The City of Sydney Inclusion and Disability Panel has launched a new inclusive and accessible campaign Too Easy.
It will approach 1,300 venues to welcome more disabled patrons in rather than turn them away because their speech might be slurred and their walking is compromised.
The panel’s chair Mark Tonga points out the campaign is not about blame-laying but “about access and attitude., I like to see the whole community looking at it.
“It’s a social responsibility, not only for venue staff but for our community too.”
MELBOURNE ENTECH HAS THREE PITCHES TO INVESTORS
The next ENTTeCH Melbourne – for tech businesses and startups that focus on film, music, TV, theatre, performance, gaming and online – returns Tuesday, Feb 26 @ ACMI X with pitches to venture capitalists among its events.
There’ll be tech presentations and networking, while three start-ups get the chance to pitch to a panel that includes Paul Baron (Melbourne Angels), Andrew Fullerton
(entertainment lawyer), and Rupert Deans (Plattr VR CEO).
OLLIE OLSEN RETIRES
Australian electronic pioneer Ollie Olsen posted this on his Facebook page: “Hi all, I’ve decided to retire from music. Thanks for your support.”
Olsen’s bands Whrlywirld (1978-80), Orchestra of Skin and Bone (1984-86) and No (1987-89) changed the face of Australian music and opened the country’s music overseas.
His friendship with Michael Hutchence resulted in the Max Q project while he was music director Richard Lowenstein’s Hutch-starring Dogs In Space.
In recent years, Olsen worked with Japanese bands Boredoms and AOA, and the experimental Taipan Tiger Girls.
NEWCASTLE VENUE EXPANDS LIVE MUSIC
Newcastle identity Mick Starkey’s rock, blues and Americana venue Stag and Hunter Hotel underwent some renos over the holidays to increase its commitment to live music.
On January 31 it will unveil its expanded front bar with better viewing and new toilets.
AND A FEW OTHER THINGS …
Sydney singer Montaigne fronted up unexpectedly to Brisbane’s volunteer-run homeless & disadvantaged youth refuge Red Cross Night Cafe at City Hall to dish out their dinner and played four songs.
In an emotional US radio interview, Soulja Boy claims he is responsible for Drake’s success “everything he knows… he copied my whole fucking flow!” The rant continued: “Stop playing with me like I didn’t teach Drake everything he know. You didn’t hear Drake on his first song – [singing] ‘Tell me what’s really going on / Drizzy Drake back in this thing / I’m ready / What’s happenin’?‘
Drunken behaviour in Hobart has seen the southern city the latest to call for lockouts.
Northern Territory identities are calling for pill testing at music festivals …. Because homemade DIY test kits are unreliable.
Those attending the Tamworth Country Music Festival are being reminded to bone up on the water restrictions in place in the area.
Mac Miller’s parents will attend the Grammys in his honour.
The NT News says that a Monsoons nightclub patron was left with hearing problems after being attacked by a bouncer after questioning why he was asked to leave.
NSW’s Camden Hotel was ordered to shut for two days for serving up to 20 beers to three boys aged under 18 who got involved in a brawl after leaving the music showcasing venue.
Townsville band King Social have gone on hiatus.
Troubled NZ rapper Scribe leapt on stage at Bay Dreams festival to join his mate P-Money on their 2003 hit “How Many”. P-Money admitted on Instagram that even he was surprised to see him.
Adelaide City Council won’t take action against Rae Sremmurd of FOMO act Slim Jxmmi for jumping into the River Torrens after playing to 10,000 people.
9 Rangers Road in Neutral Bay in Sydney used to be where the legendary Alberts Studios were located. The Daily Telegraph reported that it’s now a block of 23 apartments (appropriately called The Muse to acknowledge its place in music history) which are now on sale.